You read that correctly. Fintech startups are trying to get regulators, like the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, to build processes and licenses that would make it easier to do business across the US. The one example cited is Circle Internet's request to have a banking charter. So, why would a fintech startup want to be held under more scrutiny? The process of getting state by state approval is a hinderance on the business, and such a charter allows these companies to build a broader strategy from day one. Many fintech firms realize that they need to partner with banks and other institutions to grow and not try to "tear them down". These licenses and charters would help facilitate just that.
The prospect of obtaining a federal banking license “is appealing, both because of our long-term strategy but also because it takes a lot of the cost and complexity of working with many third parties out of the equation,” said Circle Chief Executive Jeremy Allaire, who declined to comment on specific government discussions. “We need to be open to discussing it and working through it,” said Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry, referring generally to bank charters for fintech companies. “And I think that’s the sea change in attitude here at the OCC.”