Monzo replaces entire Monzo Plus team and refunds customers after admitting premium service “didn’t go according to plan”

By Oliver Smith on Wednesday 25 September 2019

Digital Banking

Digital bank is “going back to basics and starting from the beginning" with its subscription offerings.

Monzo replaces entire Monzo Plus team and refunds customers after admitting premium service “didn’t go according to plan”
Image source: Monzo.

Five months after launching its Monzo Plus service, Monzo is going back to the drawing board after admitting that the subscription service “isn’t the best it could be”.

The news was announced on Monzo’s community forum yesterday that the Monzo Plus team, current subscription offering and even the Monzo Plus name will be replaced.

“We’re going back to basics and starting from the beginning,” wrote Product Marketing Manager Tom Davies.

“While we are fortunate to see our customer base growing faster than ever, it’s important we take steps now to ensure we’re moving towards becoming a sustainable business.”

Monzo Plus subscriptions currently include premium services like additional ATM withdrawal allowances, travel insurance, airport lounge access, Monzo merchandise, discounts and more. 

Davies announced a whole new 11-person team would now be dedicated to Monzo Plus, with the existing team “finding other impactful areas in the business to work on.”

“A smaller, more nimble team can focus hard on the problem until we really need to grow. With that focus, and the fresh perspective we’re bringing in, it’s our best chance of achieving success.”

For existing Monzo Plus customers, the overhaul means that many will shortly be refunded, in particular subscribers of the £4.95/month Supporter bundle as Davies said planned additions of Monzo merchandise and Metal Card draws will not happen.

“I know this is frustrating, but it was a tough decision we had to make so our small team can focus on delivering a paid offering you can really be proud of. We hope you understand.”

Going forward Monzo said it will hold weekly updates on its subscription offering, will be A/B testing potential subscriptions by randomly surveying its app users, and will continue its transparent development approach.

“We’re taking our first steps based on what’s most irreversible. So, right now, we’re focusing less on the exact cards, the exact name, the exact features, or even the number of plans we have. That’s because we think we can change these later,” added Davies.

“We care more about the direction (such as who is this for and what are the first one or two features) and building a really exceptional product and experience. That’s because it’s harder to recover if we get those wrong.”

Currently Monzo Plus and Monzo’s overdrafts and lending business are the bank’s two main sources of revenue.

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