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RBS to Meet Digital Needs of SMEs With New Digital Bank

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Per a Financial Times article, Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS - Free Report) has opened a digital only bank — Mettle — to cater to the needs of small-sized companies. Also, a new business-focused current account has been introduced, operations of which would not be related to the bank’s other brands.

The digital bank would also be providing services like invoicing and cash flow forecasting. Customers will be able to access their accounts through mobile app. Notably, RBS plans to add some more new features going forward in accordance to clients’ demand.

Mettle’s services will be offered to a small number of customers in pilot mode from Tuesday. Also, additional businesses would be invited to acknowledge their interest to join the bank as it is allowed to expand further.

Alison Rose, head of commercial and private banking at RBS, told Financial Times, “The main challenge facing all banks right now is how we shift from physical to digital, so what we’re trying to do with this is respond to customers telling us how they want to interact.”

Introduction of Mettle marks the British lender’s major investment in technology amid rapidly changing customer preferences. Moreover, to be on par with the changing trends and combat competition from other digital-only banks, many U.K. lenders are deploying capital toward technological innovations.

The Guardian recently reported that Lloyds Banking Group (LYG - Free Report) is planning a major restructuring of its workforce as it focuses on digitization. The bank will cut 6,000 jobs but create another 8,000 over two years.

Some other European banks involved closely in expanding digital offerings are Deutsche Bank (DB - Free Report) and Barclays (BCS - Free Report) .

Royal Bank of Scotland’s diversified business model and commitment to improve financials are likely to support its overall growth in the near term. Also, the bank’s return to profits generation has made investors optimistic of its growth potential. However, its involvement in legal issues remains a concern.

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