Xiaomi-AMTD Joint Venture Launches Hong Kong Virtual Bank

Airstar Bank commits to becoming “Everyone’s Bank”, contrasting itself with conventional banking models which focus on high net-worth individuals.

Airstar Bank – a joint venture between Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi and AMTD Group – has announced the official launch to the public of its virtual banking services.

The launch encompasses savings accounts, time deposits and personal loan products – offering deposit rates as high as 3.6% per annum, loan rates as low as 2.99% per annum, and allowing customers to set up accounts in five minutes.

“Airstar Bank commits to their core mission and value proposition of becoming ‘Everyone’s Bank’ with financial inclusion in the heart,” the virtual bank says, contrasting itself with conventional banking models which focus on high net-worth individuals.

“Airstar Bank is determined to deliver the full benefits of emerging financial technologies and innovative solutions, providing each and every customer with proactive stellar banking experience regardless of their wealth.”

Airstar Bank was granted a banking licence by the HKMA (Hong Kong Monetary Authority) in May 2019. It launched a pilot in March to allow 2,000 selected customers to trial its virtual banking services under the HKMA’s fintech supervisory sandbox.

Following today’s (11 June) launch, Airstar Bank will look to integrate finance with users’ lifestyle, providing other innovative financial products including financial planning analysis to customers via its mobile app.

“With a mission to become ‘Everyone’s Bank’, we harness financial technology to deliver simple, tailored-made and practical products at very reasonable costs to our users through a personalised and efficient virtual banking experience,” said an Airstar Bank spokesperson.

The HKMA authorised eight virtual bank licences in total in May 2019. Airstar Bank is the second virtual bank to launch full operations, after ZA Bank – backed by mainland insurer ZhongAn Online P&C Insurance and Sinolink Group.

In April, ‘Mox Bank’ – backed by Standard Chartered, PCCW, HKT and Trip.com – launched pilot services.

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