Challenger bank N26 is launching a new trading feature in its app – N26 Crypto. Users will be able to trade crypto assets with ease using the money in their N26 account. Behind the scenes, N26 is partnering with Bitpanda to handle trading and custody.
N26 is gradually going to roll out N26 crypto across Europe. First, only certain users in Austria will be able to access the new feature. Other countries should get this facility sometime in the next six months.
N26 will let you buy, sell and hold 100 different crypto assets. The startup plans to add another 94 crypto assets later down the road. And I am sure the company will soon expand into stocks and other asset classes.
N26 Crypto will be accessible from the second tab, which has been renamed to “Finance”. From this screen, you’ll find your spaces—the sub-accounts you can use to set aside some money in a different pocket of money. Spaces can also be used as shared accounts with anyone else.
Below your list of spaces, there is a new “Trading” section with your crypto portfolio. N26 lists all your crypto assets, the value of your positions and how they have changed in the last 24 hours, weeks, months or years.
Whenever users want to buy or sell certain cryptocurrencies, they can press the Buy or Sell button, choose a crypto asset (or search for it) and enter an amount. The N26 displays both the exchange rate and how much you will pay.
N26 plans to charge 1.5% for bitcoin trades and 2.5% for all other cryptocurrencies. This is the same fee that users pay in Bitpanda’s own app. Users who pay €16.90 per month for N26 Metal will have to pay 1% and 2% respectively in transaction fees on bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
The main advantage with N26 Crypto is that it is directly linked to your existing bank account. You do not need to upload money to a different trading account, switch to the Bitpanda app (on other apps) and then start trading. Similarly, when you cash out with N26 Crypto, you will get EUR in your main N26 account – no need to transfer money back to your bank account.
N26 is not the first fintech startup to have a deep integration with Bitpanda. French payments app Lydia partnered with Bitpanda last year to introduce the ability to trade stocks, precious metals, cryptocurrencies and ETFs in its app. In my experience, it works really well.
Last week, N26 shared its 2021 financial results. While gross revenue rose 50% to reach more than €180 million, its operating costs also grew rapidly, resulting in a net loss of €170 million.
Of course, the N26 has also raised hundreds of millions of euros. Thanks to these deep pockets, the company has plenty of time to figure out how to get more revenue from its users while keeping its operating costs under control. As N26 and Bitpanda have agreed to share the revenue coming from N26 Crypto, the new feature should contribute to the company’s bottom line.