Big banks will try to copy us


There was “no single moment” that made her want to quit, but speaking with fintech entrepreneurs in Australia and the United States gave her a realization of how she wanted to change retail banking.

“I started thinking about a bank that really focused on doing a couple of things well, that was all about everyday transactional banking, the daily banking business, and what (would happen) if you used the information on each transaction, to give people insight into their overall lives.”

“So I quit my job,” she added. “And in 2014, I started the journey to build a bank. And it’s been a long process because you don’t just build a bank overnight. We’ve done things the hard way in that I’m a big believer that things that are worth doing are things that tend to be quite hard – because easy things anybody can do.”

Resume – Anne Boden

• Education: Bachelor of science in computer science and chemistry at Swansea University; master of business administration (MBA) at Middlesex University.
• Career: Vice president, corporate and institutional banking at UBS; director and chief information officer at Aon; executive vice president, transaction banking at ABN Amro; head of Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), global transaction services at RBS; chief operating officer at AIB; CEO of Starling.

Starling Bank employs only 110 people, and relies heavily on engineers.

Boden believes that the challenger bank’s smaller scale operation gives it an edge over larger players, by significantly reducing the costs of running a bank.

“The big banks will try and copy everything we do,” she said. “The issue is, can they copy it and maintain and deliver it with small teams of people – hundreds of people – rather than with 10,000 people?”

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