An influx of new users to London-based neobank Kroo is causing a backlog of customer applications following a high-profile recommendation from financial journalist Martin Lewis.
UKTN can reveal that the challenger bank’s application process has been overwhelmed by customers flocking to open an account on the advice of the Money Saving Expert founder.
On the Martin Lewis Money Show, the financial broadcaster recommended the Kroo current account for savers looking to take advantage of higher interest rates.
The Kroo current account claims to offer the best interest rate for any easy withdrawal account at 3.03% AER.
However, Kroo appears to be struggling to keep up with the surge in demand, with swathes of customers complaining of delays and errors when trying to open accounts and deposit money.
One customer, writing in a one-star review on customer rating platform Trustpilot, said: “Opened the account via the app last Wednesday. As suggested by Martin Lewis…A week later and the app is just saying we’ll be in touch shortly.
“Tried to contact them via chatbot but that is not going through either. Think I will give this bank a miss. Very disappointed.”
Another wrote: “Like many others, opened a account [sic] after watching Martin Lewis…transferred the rest of my savings and it’s ‘under review’? So my life savings have left my old account not yet showed up in my Kroo account floating around in cyberspace and no one’s answering my messages?? Very concerned is a understatement [sic].”
Kroo has responded to the negative new customer reviews on Trustpilot by saying it’s currently “experiencing a high volume of applications, so it’s taking a little longer to review than usual”.
UKTN tests of the banking app found the application interface to be running slowly, while the video selfie verification process was frequently unresponsive, in line with recent user criticism.
A spokesperson from Kroo Bank told UKTN: “After being featured in the recent Martin Lewis Money Show we are seeing a fantastic response to our market-leading interest rate and huge demand for our current account.
“This has created a queue in applications and customer chats which we are working through as quickly as possible and means some accounts may take between 7-10 days to complete.”
A spokesperson for Martin Lewis said he was unavailable for comment.
Founded in 2016, Kroo is a mobile-only challenger bank. The company raised £26m in a funding round in May 2022 after receiving its banking licence in the UK.
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