Nubank Eyes Mexican Expansion

Brazilian neobank Nubank is applying for a Mexican banking license to offer more products and services.

Mexico’s National Banking and Securities Commission (CNBV) will begin the necessary protocol over the coming months. Nubank officials said it would be the first time it operates as a bank; it is considered a financial company or institution in Brazil and Colombia.

 “Our commitment to Mexico is long-term, and our clients are asking us for more, from higher deposit limits to investment products and the ability to deposit their wages with Nu,” said Iván Canales, general director of Nu México.

In 2020, Nubank began commercial operations in Mexico, kicking off a $135m investment. By 2022, it reported 3.2 million customers, offering credit cards, loans and savings accounts.

Nubank’s total investment in Mexico exceeds $ 1.3 billion, making the neobank one of the largest foreign investors in the country.

An approximate calculation of the Capitalization Index (ICAP) of Nubank would be close to 40%. This is almost four times higher than the banking regulatory requirement (10.5% in Mexico) and double the sector average (19%).

Following the acquisition of Akala, a CNBV-regulated sociedad financiera popular (sofipo)—an intermediate financial institution established by the Popular Savings and Credit Law in 2001, Nubank began to take deposits in Mexico in January 2022. The Cuenta Nu reached one million users and more than $50 million invested after a month of its launch, which was aided by a 9% annual yield, one of the highest on the market.

In a blog post, Nubank emphasized that “it’s still day one” and promised to continue to evolve to meet customer needs. Given Mexico’s relatively low credit card access rate of 11%, according to Nubank, and 47% of people unbanked, this evolution will look to meet that client profile. Nubank is the largest sofipo in Mexico. the world’s largest neobank and Latin America’s highest-valued unicorn, valued at $33.5 billion. CEO David Vélez, Cristina Junqueira and Edward Wible co-founded the Brazilian company in 2013. It has more than 80 million customers worldwide, the vast majority in Brazil.