Hilary Joffe Columnist

Discovery Bank has become the second new bank to obtain a licence from SA’s banking regulators as the market is opened to new competitors for the first time in almost two decades. The award of a banking licence to Discovery, announced on Monday, comes after TymeDigital gained its licence at the end of September. Postbank is still waiting for its licence, which requires some legislative and technical shareholding issues to be resolved. Discovery’s licence is subject to conditions that relate mainly to Competition Commission approval for the migration to the new bank of its Discovery card joint venture, which is 25%-owned by First National Bank and runs off the FNB platform. "We are looking forward to extending the Discovery business model and philosophy through Discovery Bank to South African consumers from 2018," said the company’s CE, Adrian Gore. Though Discovery has yet to detail what its bank will do and whom it will target, analysts expect it will be card-driven and largely onl...

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