Virgin Group PLC may be planning to introduce an online bank in Canada, according to a Friday report in Toronto's Globe and Mail.
Andrew Black, the president and chief executive of Virgin Mobile Canada, told the paper that consumers "don't trust their banks to the same degree that maybe they did" and that "Richard [Branson, Virgin Group's chairman] thinks this industry in Canada needs some shaking up. It's been on his list for a while."
Virgin already offers financial services in the United Kingdom, the United States, South Africa and Australia in partnerships with banking companies; it does not have a banking charter of its own, and the article said it has not applied for one in Canada.
However, Branson said in March that he was considering acquiring a bank in the United Kingdom or applying for a banking license there. Virgin offers deposit accounts and mortgages in the United Kingdom through a partnership with Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC, and its credit cards are issued by MBNA Europe Bank Ltd.