Apple buys UK open banking startup, fuelling rumors of UK Apple Card launch
Apple has acquired Credit Kudos, a UK open banking startup in a deal reportedly worth $150 million, as first noted by The Block. Credit Kudos is a firm that provides information to lenders from the UK’s open banking framework to offer faster, automated decision-making about loans, fuelling rumors that Apple may be preparing to launch its Apple Card credit card in the country.
Apple Card launched in the United States back in 2019. The credit card, created in partnership with investment banking company Goldman Sachs, allows users to track spending and help manage bills within the Wallet app on iOS – completely fee-free, and with lower interest rates compared to traditional banks.
Users can make purchases using their Apple Card with Apple Pay on their iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac, or with the optional titanium Apple Card banking card, which features no printed card number or security code, making it the world’s most secure credit card.
While it isn’t clear Apple intends to do with Credit Kudos following the acquisition, it is plausible to assume the company’s technology could be used to launch Apple Card to customers in the UK, marking what would be the first international expansion of the service.
Apple already applied for the Apple Card trademark in several counties and regions across Europe and Hong Kong, with filings in 2019 showing the company submitted requests to secure the name in France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Spain, Sweden, the UK, and more.
On the surface the acquisition seems to point Apple is gearing up to expand Apple Card internationally as Apple CEO Tim Cook has previously shared interest in doing however, it could be that the buyout is to aid Apple’s operations in the US, making more automated decisions about loans and Apple Card acceptance.