Afterpay moves into digital banking in partnership with Westpac

Afterpay moves into digital banking in partnership with Westpac

Having already set the benchmark for Australia's buy-now pay-later (BNPL) world, Afterpay (ASX: APT) appears poised to disrupt the digital banking space too with its new partnership with Westpac (ASX: WBC).

Called 'Money by Afterpay', the BNPL giant's new app is a money management platform giving customers access to their spending data and a savings account with a 1 per cent per annum interest rate.

The product, which will launch to the public in October, comes 10 months after Afterpay confirmed it had entered into an agreement with Big Four bank Westpac which is acting as the regulated deposit account and card issuer.

Afterpay has also secured an Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), giving it the legal standing to provide general financial product advice and distribute basic deposit products and debit cards.

"Afterpay has always stood apart in the way it connects with customers around common core values of simplicity, transparency and trust," Afterpay co-founders and co-CEOs Anthony Eisen and Nick Molnar said.

"Money will broaden our relationship with our loyal customers and also attract a new group that's looking to streamline how they manage their finances within the debit economy, further cementing our commitment to supporting responsible spending.

"To bring a money app to life in ten months demonstrates that we can quickly move at pace to get well ahead of customer expectations and bring both cutting-edge features and true 'surprise and delight' to the experience."

Once the new service is publicly available, customers must have an existing Afterpay BNPL account to get started and will use their Afterpay credentials to log into the Money app.

The Money app will display a customer's BNPL balance, upcoming orders and instalments alongside their daily spending account and savings accounts, giving customers a single, seamless view of their finances.

Users will get a daily account with a physical debit card, digital wallet offerings and the ability to make and receive real time payments. It is proposed that the account will not charge customer fees.

In addition, customers can earn interest on up to 15 different savings accounts, which the company says allows users to open separate accounts for different savings goals.

"We've built upon the trust and love of the Afterpay brand to bring Gen Z and Millennials a money and lifestyle app that's truly built for them," Afterpay executive vice president of new platforms Lee Hatton said.

"Combining money management with the BNPL offering will allow us to help customers spend, save and play just by using Money as their primary app.

"We will deliver new and unique features to customers consistently throughout the year and we'll be nimble enough to quickly act on feedback in near real-time. We can't wait to share this with Australians."

Employees will test the app in July and a series of feature drops will follow in the weeks leading up to the public launch.

Shares in Afterpay are up 1.33 per cent to $106.34 per share at 10.44am AEST.

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