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TrueLayer: Innovation, regulation and the future of financial services

By Julian Birkinshaw, Ken Mark, Farhan Lalji


In April 2021, having just raised $70 million in a Series D funding, Francesco Simoneschi, Co-Founder and CEO of TrueLayer, was thinking about expansion plans. Should the company focus on product innovation, broadening its line-up within the 13 countries in which it operated, or should it look to grow beyond its European base? In the five years since its founding in July 2016, the TrueLayer team had made significant progress, winning customers and opening up new markets. Now they needed to chart the next stage of their growth.

In 2018 European regulators had mandated banks to allow customers more control over their bank data, hence the general term “open banking”. The directive had come after years of debate about how best to introduce innovation and lower costs for consumers. The challenge for incumbent banks was that they earned a large proportion of their income from transaction and other fees. Naturally, they were reluctant to embrace the concept of open banking. Moreover, it was not common for consumers to switch banks.


Learning objectives

  1. Learn how new   entrants can exploit regulatory changes that disrupt an established industry
  2. Illustrate the interests and incentives of incumbents
  3. Understand why it often takes new firms to develop innovative solutions for consumers
  4. Illustrate the challenges in deciding whether to grow by expanding product range versus entering new markets
  5. Understand how a new entrant can best position itself within an evolving ecosystem


Publication Date: February 2022
LBS Case Code: CS-22-008
Subjects: , ,
Pages: 18
Format: pdf