By Oliver Smith on Wednesday 5 April 2023
Snapping up the fintech co-founded by Tandem’s chair Paul Pester.
Tandem Bank has made its first acquisition of 2023, AltFi can exclusively reveal, with the takeover of the recently-launched money-sharing app Loop Money.
Loop is a social network aimed at helping friends and family to lend and borrow money with each other, and using open banking to enable seamless payments.
The app starts with a bill-splitting concept similar to Splitwise, but then develops it with the addition of an ‘overdraft’ that you can access by inviting your contacts to lend you the money.
“Tandem is on a mission to build the UK’s greener, digital bank – offering customers more sustainable ways to save, borrow and spend. The addition of Loop to our award-winning digital product range fits perfectly with our strategy,” said Alex Mollart, Tandem’s CEO.
“Loop’s unique approach to money sharing offers users a real alternative to expensive overdrafts. Given the app’s early success among Gen-Z users, the acquisition of Loop gives us a fantastic opportunity to grow Tandem’s customer base among a generation of climate-conscious consumers.”
Launched in early 2022, Loop was founded the previous year by Mirko Giacco, Ankit Tharwani and Paul Pester, who is also the chair of Tandem Bank.
Tandem said its board took precautions with the acquisition to manage any potential conflict of interest for Pester, in particular by handing over the chair position for the relevant board discussion to Tandem senior independent director David Fisher.
The financial details of the deal were not disclosed by either Tandem or Loop.
Following the transaction, Loop will continue to operate as a standalone app and brand, but Tandem plans to embed its products and features within Loop over time.
The acquisition is hardly a novel move for Tandem, which has become increasingly acquisitive over the past few years.
At the start of 2020 it acquired Allium Lending Group, a green lender, bought £44.6m in unsecured consumer loans from Honeycomb and in 2021 snapped up a £100m mortgage book from Bank and Clients.
Then in 2022, Tandem bought consumer lender Oplo in a move that dramatically increased the scale of the business, reaching £1.2bn in assets.
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