We picked the brain of Babel Poli, Product Owner Rebilla, to understand why he believes the Rebilla Card is such a competitive product and hear his view on the fierce competition from other challenger banks. We also pushed him to reveal (some) of the next Rebilla Card features...
What is the reason to launch Rebilla Card now?
It does not make any sense to us to pay for just having a card and then pay additional fees every time you use it. So we decided to introduce a very competitive card onto the market from the standpoint of saving people money. That is why we made the bold decision to go with no fees at all and in addition offer a 2 percent cashback on purchases up to SEK 50 000 a year. I believe the customers will see the real value of our card once they see how much they get back without having to pay e.g. currency exchange fees, annual fees, setup fees and withdrawal fees.
But if there are not any fees and a 2 percent cashback - how will you make money?
Instead of spending a lot of money on traditional marketing, we strongly believe that by developing the best and most competitive products available on the market, and really helping people save money, people will recommend us to friends and family and we will attract many new customers and also retain them. Northmill has been in business since 2006 and has always had a long-term approach - we know how to scale and remain profitable.
Even though the margins in the credit card business are relatively low in general, we believe that since we are not solely a credit card company but have many different products, that we can reduce that margin and deliver a great card to the customers and remain profitable.
You claim that you developed a “card for everyone”. How do you back it up?
We really do build a bank for everyone and in order to stay true to that claim, we always conduct individual scoring and dig deeper and look at a wide range of factors to give everyone an as transparent and fair opportunity as possible. A credit card is in many aspects necessary to have today since many players do not accept debit cards, for example when you are renting a car. But up until now, in many cases you have had to pay just to have a credit card and some even used the same interest rate level for everyone. We believe in making our products available for as many people as possible but also tailoring and adapting them to everyone’s individual needs. From that perspective, I have a hard time making the argument why one should not use the Rebilla Card as the primary card.
How will you handle the fierce competition? There are many companies offering credit cards today...
Competition is good because it forces companies to develop really strong offerings that benefit customers. With the fee-free Rebilla Card and such a strong cashback offer we think we have taken things to the next level. But it is also important to highlight that we are building a full-scale banking offering with Rebilla and we hope the customers will understand that we are more than just a card, and that there is added value in using our other products when they feel it is needed.
Northmill was granted a Swedish banking license not too long ago, what role does that play for Rebilla?
In a nutshell, it means that we can continue to create great products for our customers and also explore new exciting opportunities. Our aim has always been to help people save money using technology, be transparent and really listen to what the market and customers are asking for. I think the Rebilla Card is a fantastic example of that. It really puts the customer first.
What can you disclose in terms of additional Rebilla Card features?
It is our DNA to constantly test, analyze and then update, which means it is a never-ending process of adding features. But to give you a taste of some of the features closest to implementation it is the ability to connect Rebilla Card to your savings account where you can start saving money or put up individual saving goals directly in the Rebilla app. But again, since we are not solely a credit card company, we view the Rebilla Card as one important part of our growing Rebilla-banking offer. Operating as a bank, fueled by a relentless mindset, provides us the opportunity to take a broader and more long-term approach and constantly develop fantastic and very competitive products and features.