House of Fraser to back Tandem with £35m

Challenger bank Tandem is set to receive a £35m investment form UK department store firm House of Fraser.

The investment in the London-based app-only bank will allow the retailer to offer its customer exclusive banking services and payments methods.

Set up by Small World and Azimo founders, Michael Kent and Ricky Knox, Tandem competes with the likes of Monzo, Starling and BBVA-backed Atom Bank the UK’s increasingly comparative challenger bank space.

The company received its banking licence in 2016 and has rolled out its app to more than 10,000 customers but is yet to launch its current account and credit card services, which are scheduled for later in the year.

Tandem raised more than £30m in funding last year from investors including eBay co-founder Pierre Omidvar.

It also took on £2.3m in an equity crowdfunding round of Seedrs that saw it valued at £65m.

House of Fraser was acquired by Chinese conglomerate Sanpower for £480m in 2014 and while it already offers loyalty and credit card schemes through NewDay, the tie-up with a challenger bank would be a first for the UK high street.

The UK retail giant’s initial commitment of up to £35m remains subject to unspecified preconditions.

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