Revolut turned first annual profit as customer numbers jumped


A surge in customers helped fintech Revolut turn an annual profit for the first time in 2021, according to a long-delayed set of results from one of Europe’s most valuable start-ups.

The London-based company on Wednesday reported a net profit of £26.3mn in 2021 compared to a loss of £223mn the previous year. Revenues in 2021 jumped to £636mn, a near tripling from the previous year.

Revolut has evolved from a low-fee money transfer service and offers bank accounts across Europe through its Lithuanian banking licence as well as being registered as an e-money institution in the UK. A funding round in the summer of 2021 valued the group at $33bn and ensured it did not have to return to the market as tech valuations crumbled last year.

Revenues from its foreign exchange and wealth division, which includes crypto trading, increased more than eightfold year to almost £350mn. The fintech first pushed into cryptocurrency trading in 2017, ahead of most of its rivals.

Retail customers jumped by almost 50 per cent to 16.4mn in the year and the group now has more than 27m. Revenues climbed further in 2022, Revolut said, hitting more than £850m. The group did not disclose the profits it made last year.

“Our profitability in 2021 was despite the economy suffering a significant prolonged shock from global lockdowns, continued travel bans and Covid-19 effects,” said chief executive Nik Storonsky. “At the same time, the accelerated shift to digital services and remote working boosted our number of customers and the amount that they used our app.”

However, Revolut has suffered significant growing pains in its quest to challenge traditional banks. Insiders have revealed a hard-charging culture and the company has been hit by high-profile departures of senior compliance staff.

The group’s auditors, BDO, had been pushing the fintech to improve its internal controls.

The accounts for the year ending December 2021 were required to be submitted to Companies House in September 2022. The fintech was then given an extension until the end of December — a deadline it has also failed to meet.

A boost for Revolut from crypto is unlikely to have been sustained last year, when prices for multiple digital currencies plunged and FTX, one of the most-hyped players in the nascent industry, collapsed.


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