Commonwealth Bank (ASX:CBA) splurges $50m on tech, mobile-app looks to fly

Company News

by Melissa Darmawan

Banking giant Commonwealth Bank (ASX:CBA) has splurged $50 million in a 23 per cent shareholding in online shopping start-up Little Birdie and 25 per cent shareholding in tech-energy retail company Amber.

Under the digital banking expansion, customers will access shopping deals and cheaper energy prices on their mobile app which is set to be released. The bank’s moves follow their announcement at the start of the month after inking a deal with US online provider BigCommerce, aimed for business customers to boost their online shopping presence. 

CBA chief executive Matt Comyn said their mobile app needs to be at the “forefront of innovation” as more customers shift to digital banking solutions.

“The shift to digital banking is accelerating and we are investing to remain at the forefront of innovation”.

“We are integrating new services into our platform to customise and personalise the digital experience in ways that will increase engagement and bring greater value to our customers” he said.

The expansion to provide cheaper energy options comes on the back of the backdrop of rising residential property prices which rose 3.6 per cent over 12 months as released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics in December 2020 period released in March as home ownership continues to climb.

“Purchasing a home is a time when customers look for ways to save money, and electricity is a large expense in a household budget. Our partnership with Amber will help to differentiate our home buying proposition, with Amber providing direct access to wholesale prices and bringing additional discounts for CBA customers".

Australia’s biggest bank also announced a pilot scheme to allow customers to view balances in its banking app from other eligible financial institutions. The company recently reported their third-quarter cash profit doubled as a rapid economic recovery stimulated robust lending and enabled the country’s largest bank to reverse bad-debt provisions made during the pandemic.

Shares in Commonwealth Bank (ASX:CBA) are trading 0.11 per cent higher at $99.68.

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