The German financial regulator Bafin is tightening its control over the prominent Berlin-based fintech Solaris.
Accordingly, the Berlin-based fintech may no longer accept new customers without prior permission from Bafin.
The reason: the financial supervisory authority apparently sees weaknesses in the business model. Until these deficiencies are remedied, the authority may severely restrict the acceptance of new customers. Existing partnerships, however, are not affected by Bafin’s demand, writes Handelsblatt.
The institute will be subject to a “permission proviso” for new partnerships in the future, Solaris CEO-designate Carsten Höltkemeyer told Handelsblatt. “So we have to get the green light from Bafin before we can take on new customers.” This requirement is unusual for the German banking sector. Solaris has earned a reputation for putting a stop to fraudsters.
CEO Roland Folz is still in charge of the fintech. From April of this year, however, Carsten Höltkemeyer is to take over his post. He has been a member of the board since November and is expected to lead Solarisbank to profitability.
Solaris was last valued at €1.6 billion and is of great importance to the fintech ecosystem in Germany. The institute allows other startups to use Solaris‘ banking license and do their first business with it. In addition, Solaris offers banking services to established companies, for example, credit card issuing.