Royal Bank of Scotland has ended an attempt to compete with digital challenger banks like Monzo and Revolut, just 6 months after it was launched to the public. Bó will merge with Mettle, another RBS digital-only challenger brand for SMBs.
“The circumstances have changed,” chief executive Alison Rose told Yahoo Finance UK on Friday. “We’ve always said that we will look to innovate. Clearly in the current situation we’ve had to make prioritisation choices around where we should invest and what we should do to support our existing customers.” Rose’s comments suggest the COVID-19 pandemic influenced the decision to close Bó. She said there was greater “opportunity” in the small business market given the level of “support” businesses currently require. Bó has around 11,000 customers, mostly “friends and family”, Rose said, who RBS will “continue to support”. “Bó was something we were testing and learning from,” she said. “It was launched in the app store but we never undertook a consumer launch or introduced any type of acquisition targets.”