Financial Tech Startup Takes Over Germany


Based out of Berlin, Number26 is a relatively new finance tech startup that offers mobile banking services to most of Germany, and is continuing to grow. Number26 is spreading into six additional European markets, and is successfully winning over customers from rival companies like Banco Santander SA and Deutsche Bank AG.

In Germany and Austria alone, Number26 has over 80,000 clients using their mobile banking services with a Wirecard AG bank account. After such success in its country of origin, the company is now expanding their services to Greece, France, Spain, Italy, Slovakia, and Ireland. They also plan to add more markets as Number26 flourishes in their newest European market additions throughout the next year.

Number26 is even in talks with TransferWise Ltd. to collaborate on international transactions that could make their company even more indispensable and useful to their growing ranks of European consumers. Number 26’s Chief Executive Officer, Valentin Stalf, said in a recent interview that one of the reasons the finance startup has been so successful is due to their business being“very scalable.”

“We can verify people all over Europe with a simple video-conference call. With this latest expansion, we can distribute overhead costs to many more potential customers,” Stalf continued.

While Number26 certainly isn’t the first financial tech startup to use consumers’ smartphones as a more convenient alternative to the traditional banks, it is one of the most rapidly-growing in Europe at this moment. According to Stalf, Number26 managed to raise $11 million in funding this April thanks to their many interested large-scale investors.

With their new growth spurt, the company seeks another round of funding to push Number26 into more established markets across Europe. The financial tech company is backed by MasterCard, offers safety features like push notifications for every transaction, overdraft alerts, and a sign-up process that only takes 8 minutes through the app.

It’s the quality of their tech combined with smart partnerships and business strategies that have pushed Number26 to the front of the line in mobile banking startups in Europe. Given that they’ve only been in existence since 2013, the finance tech company is progressing remarkably well, and investors are taking notice.

At this point in time, Number26 only staffs about 70 people; one of the benefits of a young, tech-driven startup. Because of their rapid expansions into their six new European markets, the company plans to add another 50 or so staffers as quickly as possible to help handle the new influx of consumers.

Notable investors in Number26 include Redalpine Ventures, Axel Springer SE, EarlyBird Ventures, and Valar Ventures (which is backed by the co-founder of PayPal Holdings Inc., Peter Thiel). Number26 has seized mobile banking from the hands of some of Germany’s biggest banks, and will continue in their newly added markets.

With so many reputable investors taking stock in this financial tech startup’s future, and with so many consumers making the switch to their services, it’s likely that Number26 has a profitable future ahead of it.

Strategy & Equity