Sunday, 31 January 2016 15:07

Aussie UBank - a FinTech disruptor

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UBank - ‘Just The Bank You Need’ - will be telling customers to borrow less money, and encouraging users to be more mobile-banking focused, including applying for home loans via mobile or tablet.

National Australia Bank (NAB) owns UBank – an Australian online only bank - launched in 2008 to help it capitalise on the move to mobile, online baking. This week it unveiled the new brand identity – a new guiding principle titled ‘Just the Bank You Need’ to mould every aspect of the bank moving forward.

UBank CEO Lee Hatton says of the new rebrand “It’s about asking the question – could you borrow less and live a happy, or even happier, life? We want our customers to have a healthy relationship with their finances, and that can come down to taking out a smaller mortgage, reducing credit card limits, or simply switching to a higher interest rate bank account.”

By abiding by the ‘Just the Bank You Need’ principle, UBank believes it will allow them to better service customers by only offering them just what they need from a bank, and nothing they don’t. The bank’s new ethos will also challenge customers to take a look at the life they’re leading and question what they really need, versus what they want—in effect encouraging them to borrow less, have less debt and subsequently live more.

The rebrand represents a change of culture for UBank’s 200 employees who are all based in North Sydney; the manner in which staff are trained and recruited has changed, as will interactions with all customers. 

For UBank, the hurdle of rebranding and retraining staff in bricks and mortar branches was never present, the entire Australian-based team, including the customer service call centre, has been on the journey of the re-brand from the beginning.

Hatton continued “Since 2008, our focus has been taking care of our customers and our community with knowledgeable, honest support and convenient, easy-to-use banking products. We have eight products to offer customers and we believe that with eight products, we have they core products customers need and nothing more.”

To coincide with the rebrand, UBank has commissioned its own TV documentary, ‘All I Need’, airing on Friday 5 February 2016 on 7Two. The show follows two Australian households as they re-evaluate their lifestyles, analysing how far they have stretched themselves financially by mistaking what they want with what they really need. A selection of experts from a number of fields are also on hand to help them change the way they view their finances and their outlook for the future when it comes to borrowing and spending.

Opinion

While not strictly a ‘tech’ story it is interesting as it shows how FinTech will disrupt traditional banking – via another disruptor called the internet. That it can run a no-frills online bank with 200 employees and some very smart software and apps augers well.

 

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Ray Shaw

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Ray Shaw ray@im.com.au  has a passion for IT ever since building his first computer in 1980. He is a qualified journalist, hosted a consumer IT based radio program on ABC radio for 10 years, has developed world leading software for the events industry and is smart enough to no longer own a retail computer store!

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