Atom, the UK’s first digital bank, is delighted and excited to announce its strategic partnership with BBVA. BBVA has agreed to invest £45m for a 29.5% stake in Atom and bring their global expertise in digital and mobile banking to the launch and growth of Atom.

In addition to their pioneering use of technology across a global banking group that spans the Americas, Europe and Asia, BBVA runs one of the world’s leading innovation programmes in the banking and fintech industry from their innovation centre in Madrid. In 2014, BBVA purchased Oregon based Simple, a tech company that is changing the way people bank and think about money in the US. In Addition, the $100 million BBVA Ventures fund has invested in leading fintech businesses, proving that values-driven banking and cutting-edge fintech are natural allies in the delivery of better value and control for both personal and business customers.

Mark Mullen, Atom’s CEO, described what the partnership and the closing of the capital raise means for Atom.

“We have long admired BBVA’s vision and leadership. Like us, BBVA firmly believe in the power of technology to transform customer’s lives for the better.  We share their commitment to place the interests of customers at the heart of everything that the bank does, and the shared values and relationship between us that has built up over months of interaction have been critical to knowing that they are THE strategic partner for Atom. It is a huge vote of confidence in our team, business model and indeed the future of competition in UK banking that BBVA are coming on this journey with us.”

Commenting on the successful close of Atom’s capital raise, founder and Chairman Anthony Thomson said:

“Atom has now raised over £135m in the 18 months since the founding team came together. This is a great response from investors to the compelling business case that the team has put together, and is a powerful signal to the regulators and most importantly for UK consumers. We have kept our app to ourselves so far to protect the innovation and IP that it is built on. Having seen it in operation I believe it will transform banking in the UK and beyond and with BBVA as our strategic partner we really do feel that the sky is the limit for Atom.”

“BBVA believes the UK offers excellent growth opportunities and that digital banks that put the customer first are the future,” said Francisco González, BBVA’s Chairman and Chief Executive. “BBVA’s investment in Atom backs those beliefs in one move”.

Atom are delighted that existing core investors Woodford Investment Management LLP and Toscafund Asset Management LLP have held their positions as leading shareholders alongside BBVA, and that well-known institutional investors Marathon Asset Management LLP and Polar Capital are also maintaining their commitment to Atom.

Atom is already in a live trial and will move shortly to an invitation-only release before an open public launch in early 2016.

Atom’s capital raise has enjoyed the advice of Canaccord Genuity and Atom has been supported throughout by Bond Dickinson LLP.