After three years and tens of millions invested in gaining a national banking license, Varo has received the critical stamp of approval from the FDIC. Varo will finally control its own deposits, and will be able to use them to fund loans and offer credit cards.
"From a regulatory perspective, this is a recognition that technology-driven banking is now mainstream," Walsh tells Axios. "This has been a three-year process, and we've spent tens of millions of dollars on it. That's something of a moat for us. It's hard to find investors willing to put that kind of money upfront without the certainty of reaching the finish line."