NatWest tests Mettle with SME banking app

NatWest has launched a standalone digital banking platform for small and medium businesses (SMEs) called Mettle.

The mobile-app based bank, developed in partnership with 11:FS and Capco, is currently in pilot mode and has been rolled out to between 100 and 150 existing and new customers, who will provide feedback on its features before a general roll-out to the public.

Mettle is the first standalone banking app to be launched by one of the UK’s top retail banking brands, as leading incumbents such as Lloyds, HSBC and Nationwide embark on wide scale digitisation to head off fast-growing challenger banks such as Monzo, Starling and Revolut.

NatWest said the Mettle app has been designed with a customer-friendly, intuitive interface in order to provide business customers with the ability to manage their finances and combine a current account features with invoicing, payment chasing and bookkeeping capabilities.

As with other digital banking apps, customers will be able to open an account in minutes. The current banking offering for Mettle consists of a mobile app and debit card. It will run independently from the bank, with both customers and non-customers able to apply for an account.

In September, NatWest’s parent bank RBS announced it was working on a standalone consumer banking platform, ‘Bo’, after it enlisted mobile-only Starling Bank to assist with digital transformation plans across retail banking.

Alison Rose, chief executive of commercial and private banking at NatWest, said: “With a constantly evolving banking and technology landscape we know we need to adapt in order to offer new customer-focused solutions.

“The premise for Mettle lets our customers focus on ‘forward-looking’ finances, combining technology and proactive insights so SMEs can make better decisions and run their businesses more successfully.”

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