The United Kingdom hosts around half of all electronic
money institutions (EMis) registered
in the European Economic Area, which provide a broad varieties of solutions to individuals,
companies and merchants. Aggregated total assets of British EMIs in 2018 were around 11 bln GBP,
77 EMIs reported increase in total assets which is together with the increased number
of EMIs indicates growth in this sector.
Lithuania is a dynamic European innovation and fintech hub,
having all necessary conditions for its fintech ecosystem to grow and develop,
namely support from the government, favorable taxation system, progressive
regulatory rules, multi-disciplinary talent pool, innovative infrastructure.
Electronic money institutions (EMIs) play an important role in the fintech ecosystem
of Lithuania: out of more than 200 fintech companies registered in the country,
over 60 are electronic money institutions.
Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) is an initiative of
the European Union aimed to ensure that customers can make cashless Euro payments
to anywhere within SEPA area in a fast, safe and efficient way, just like
national payments. SEPA plays fundamental role in improving efficiency of
cross-border payments and integrating fragmented national markets for
Euro payments into a single one.
China is not only the second-largest and fast-growing
economy, but also an important trading partner of the European Union. While
major Chinese banks have opened their branches in the European countries, focusing
on providing international trade finance services to corporations involved in trading
with China, payment needs of over 2,3 million people of Chinese origin living in Europe
and Chinese SMEs are mainly addressed by electronic money institutions (EMIs).
White-label solutions together with Banking as a Service (BaaS)
platforms offered by existing EMIs help avoiding costs incurred by developing a proprietary
banking platform, setting up an IT infrastructure, establishing connections with correspondent
banks, becoming a member of payment systems and card schemes.
Such EMIs provide a broad range of cooperative options from reseller agreements to assisting
in obtaining a banking or an EMI license.
On June 26 2020, Financial Conduct Authority of
the United Kingdom (FCA) ordered Wirecard Card Solutions Ltd to cease all
regulated activity after its parent company, Wirecard AG, filed for insolvency
in Germany. E-money institutions using Wirecard Card Solutions services
were affected by the FCA's decision and had to suspend customer cards transactions
and make customer accounts temporarily inaccessible.
E-Money Institutions (EMIs) specialized in alternative banking are
becoming an ever-growing competitive force to traditional retail banks and even
direct online banks, especially when considering business banking.
While banks prefer to deal with domestic business customers, EMIs are more
flexible: they serve international business customers with some restrictions
applied on countries and industries.
Personal current accounts offered by EMIs usually provide customers with the same facilities as traditional bank accounts while giving benefits of reduced costs and simplified opening procedure: such accounts are opened online, supporting documents are submitted online, authentication is also performed online. Account opening procedures vary in terms of required documents and identity verification.
Electronic money is a relatively new payment instrument, emerged with
the progress in technology. Electronic money's popularity has been driven by a number of
factors including growing complications in opening current accounts and getting payment cards
from traditional retail banks, changes in the population's social structure, and evolution
of the Internet into a digital workplace.