German Startup Raisin Cooperates With N26, “Empowering” Clients

Published on:

German startup Raisin (aka WeltSparen) recently announced its cooperation with N26. We spoke to CEO Tamaz Georgadze to find out about the details of the partnership and the future of financial services.

How would you describe Raisin in a few words?

Raisin gives customers the possibility to open deposits at attractive interest rates across Europe free of charge. We are currently offering more than 140 products from 32 European banks. Customers get access to all these products via one single sign-on, requiring just one single identification – all of it online from the comfort of their homes.

Your startup uses Open Banking (APIs) to collaborate with partner organizations such as N26. In what ways do you think this approach will influence tomorrow’s banking?

Open banking is the key to make collaborations with banks both easier and more successful. For the customer, that means, above all, better products, more choice, and convenience. Banks, on the other hand, can no longer trust on captive customers: Customers will place their money based on how easy, transparent and secure the financial offer is. The increasing availability of reliable and affordable data will make it furthermore possible for companies to offer products and services adapted to instant customer needs.

Recently your cooperation with N26 was made public and raised quite some attention. What do you expect from this partnership and where will it lead?

The partnership with mobile-only bank N26 allows the bank to offer its clients the chance to open savings accounts with just a few taps, without even leaving their banking apps. It is the first time that a savings service is processed within another provider. N26 is really amazing in creating a convenient and sleek customer experience. On the one hand, we can see a steady and increasing amount of deposits through N26’s customers. On the other hand, we notice a continuous and increasing interest from other potential distribution partners across Europe and which are willing to join our marketplace.

The financial services industry is one of the most affected ones by innovation and new technologies. Which trends are here to stay and will highly impact the industry, in your opinion?

We see several relevant trends in the traditional banking area. We see the emergence of marketplace offers, both happening through companies like ours which integrate and aggregate. But also banks start to switch to marketplace offerings in a number of product areas. Associated with this, we see increased access to financial products at low costs, a process some people call the democratization of financial services. Some notable examples being the spread of robo-advisors accessible almost for free also for lower wealth bands, credit access in online shopping or cross-border savings etc.

And finally, we think that the clients are being continuously empowered. The low switching propensity which helped incumbents to retain their position is changing now as customers develop trust and comfort with the new types of financial offers. Overall we believe in the bright future and lot of value creation for the end-users.

Are you using Raisin internally? How does that affect the viewpoints of the development team?

Many of our employees (including all three founders) have savings deposits with Raisin. Their direct feedback helps us to make our customer experience better. But of course, that is only one source of information. Even more important for our development team and the UX/UI designers is the feedback of our over 85,000 customers that we get as direct feedback from our customer service, from review portals, and from our regular customer surveys/user tests.

You plan to expand your portfolio adding services for business clients as well as investment products. Can you tell us more about this?

Sure. Like private customers, businesses suffer from low interests – the average interest rate for businesses in Germany is currently negative, -0,03%! By opening our offer to business clients we give them an alternative for their savings with attractive interest rates. In addition, we are working on broadening our portfolio with new and simple investment products: Our idea is to adapt even better to the different needs of our existing customers on the one hand as to respond to the interests of potential new customers on the other.

What is the biggest challenge that the company has faced?

The biggest challenge at the beginning was to onboard the first partner banks – which is totally understandable: We had to have at least three or four banks on our side to create a marketplace for our clients (we now have over 30). The banks with their headquarter in the UK, Italy or Norway had to trust us as a new company from Germany with a new business model to represent them for the first time on the European market.

What is the most memorable moment throughout the history of Raisin?

The most memorable moment throughout the history of Raisin was probably when our customer deposits reached the first billion of euros. It took us a little more than two years – whereas we achieved the second, third and now soon the fourth billion within a couple of months. But it was a big milestone also as we were the first European FinTech to reach 1 billion Euro invested volume only a few weeks after we made our marketplace accessible for customers not only in Germany and Austria but across Europe.

If there is one thing you could wish for in improving the European startup ecosystem – what would it be?

From my perspective, real steps towards creating a single market, both for traditional providers but especially for FinTechs are welcome. Banks and asset managers can access European markets through a simple passport notification, FinTechs can not as the licensing of single activities is not unified and access is regulated market by market, at times with substance requirements, local regulations to be upheld etc. A single market of more than 500 million consumers will enable European startups to build scale and competition skills to be able to match US and Asian giants with huge domestic markets.

What’s one piece of advice you can give to fellow founders for their startup?

Simple business models and full focus on customer value-add. The rest will come in due course with little effort.


Want more innovation? Check out StartUs Insights’ Breakdown on Startup Driven Innovation in the Financial Services Industry!


Sharing is caring!