Neobank Xinja floats future Indian and Malaysian expansion plans

Having only recently received a full Australian banking licence, Xinja is reportedly already looking to go beyond the continent.

Xinja is one of the latest digital banks to take advantage of Australia’s opening up for tech-based challengers in the banking industry. Other notable competitors to the incumbents include challenger banks Up and 86 400.

Xinja, founded in 2017, convinced the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) to grant it a full banking licence in September 2019.

APRA had previously granted Xinja a restricted banking licence in December 2018.

While it is currently focusing on growing in Australia, deputy CEO Andy Rigg has said that the bank is already in talks to eventually enter India and Malaysia too.

However, he told IBS Intelligence that it was unclear when that expansion would happen.

Australia has up until recently been dominated by the big four – Commonwealth Bank of Australia, Westpac Banking Corporation, Australia and New Zealand Banking Group and National Australia Bank.

This is now changing due to a combination of factors.

Not only has trust in incumbent banking institutions dropped to record lows after Australian Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry unearthed widespread misconduct in the sector, but the government has also moved to make it easier for startups to set up shop in the country.

For instance, it created restricted banking licences, like the one granted to Xinja in 2018, to make it easier to launch neobanks and challenger banks.

The government is seemingly taking more steps to make it easier to start FinTech startups in the country.

In late 2019, the senate launched a special committee to look into the challenges facing the FinTech and RegTech industries to see how the sectors could be better supported to ensure their growth.

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