Revolut taps TikTok exec to drive £300 million ad revenue

The strategy capitalizes on the data derived from user interactions within the app, as disclosed by Revolut’s head of growth, Antoine Le Nel, in a Financial Times interview.

As Revolut waits for its UK banking license approval—a process that has been pending for over three years—the company is looking to monetize its extensive user base by transforming part of its business into a media platform. According to Le Nel, targeted advertising could soon contribute a “proper chunk” of the company’s revenue.

The London-based startup has already set ambitious internal targets to achieve around £300 million from advertising by 2026. This comes at a time when the fintech’s total revenue reached £923 million in 2022, but the sector’s investor enthusiasm has somewhat cooled, and the company posted a £25 million pre-tax loss for the same year.

To back its new media strategy, Revolut has brought on Inam Mahmood, previously the head of ecommerce partnerships at TikTok UK, to lead a newly formed sales team. The strategy revolves around using data to track how users navigate the app and identifying their interests based on their activities.

Despite the novel approach, some experts express caution. Fintech consultant Rupak Ghose noted that to effectively monetize such ancillary revenue streams, deep daily customer engagement is crucial. He remarked that outside of China, the superapp strategy in banking has rarely proven successful.

Revolut is taking a strategic approach by integrating targeted advertising, boosting user engagement, and broadening its non-banking services, like launching a mobile phone e-SIM for travelers. This move towards diversification seeks to increase profitability and make the app a daily part of users’ routines, similar to checking emails or social media.

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