Revolut’s position as the UK’s most valuable fintech is in jeopardy after one of its most loyal shareholders wiped £13billion off the company’s valuation.

The hammer blow was dealt by asset manager Schroders which handed Britain’s biggest fintech unicorn a 46 per cent writedown – suggesting its holding in Revolut was worth only £5.4million as of December, down from £10.1million a year earlier.

The re-evaluation suggests that London-based Revolut could now be worth as little as £14billion – a far cry from the £27billion price tag it boasted in its last funding round in 2021.

Wolves in sheep’s clothing? Revolut, founded  by Vlad Yatsenko and Nik Storonsky (pictured) was handed a 46% writedown by asset manager Schroders

Wolves in sheep’s clothing? Revolut, founded  by Vlad Yatsenko and Nik Storonsky (pictured) was handed a 46% writedown by asset manager Schroders

Wolves in sheep’s clothing? Revolut, founded  by Vlad Yatsenko and Nik Storonsky (pictured) was handed a 46% writedown by asset manager Schroders

This is the second blow to Revolut’s valuation by a top investor in recent months, after US-based Triple Point suggested its stake lost about 15 per cent of its worth, dropping from £8.1million to £6.9million. This put the company’s valuation at around £22billion.

Revolut remains one of the biggest names in British tech and has been championed by Chancellor Jeremy Hunt, who recently praised it as a ‘shining’ success as he set out his vision of the UK as ‘the world’s next Silicon Valley’.

But the firm has faced major criticisms in recent months, with its application to secure a banking licence dragging on much longer than expected.

Regulators declined to comment on the progress of the licence, which has been in the works for over two years. But some critics have said regulatory bodies should avoid giving Revolut the green light. 

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) has warned granting Revolut a licence would present a risk to the UK’s banking sector. 

Heather Buchanan, executive policy director for the APPG on Fair Business Banking previously said: ‘I’d be utterly gobsmacked if Revolut is welcomed into the licensed banking sector with open arms and a blind eye turned.

‘We could be letting in a wolf in sheep’s clothing, and I don’t think that would end well at all for the sheep.’

In the UK, Revolut has been regulated as an electronic money institution, which restricts the products it can provide. For instance, it cannot provide loans or borrowing services to its customers. 

This puts it at odds with smaller rivals including Monzo and Starling, which already have UK banking licences.

Revolut also recently raised eyebrows after it belatedly reported its first annual profit last month, worth £26.3million in the year to December 2021

But in Revolut’s annual report, external auditor BDO warned some information in the long-delayed 2021 accounts was ‘materially misstated’, stating that it could not independently verify three-quarters of the £636million of revenue for the year.

The group was set up in 2015 by former Credit Suisse and Lehman Brothers trader Nik Storonsky, 38, and software expert Vlad Yatsenko, 39.

The business, which started out offering pre-paid currency exchange cards, now has 28m customers worldwide and operates in more than 200 countries and regions.

Storonsky is aiming for the group to become the ‘Amazon of banking’, which has fed into Revolut’s huge hiring spree.

The business has taken on about 300 staff a month since last summer and it has boosted its total headcount from 2,900 at the beginning of 2022 to about 6,000 now.

But the problems at Revolut have also been affected by the ongoing banking turmoil triggered by the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank in the US and the subsequent takeover of Credit Suisse by rival UBS.

The writedowns come as rose-tinted valuations are now coming back to bite some companies after a boom in 2021.

In its annual report, Schroders also slashed the value of three other unlisted companies in its portfolio, including Atom Bank.

Danni Hewson, AJ Bell analyst, warned the writedowns could have a huge impact on further funding rounds – showing how the lethargy towards growth companies is likely to continue in the future.

A Revolut spokesman said: ‘We do not engage in speculation on our valuation. Since our last funding round, in which we were valued at $33billion, Revolut has continued to perform strongly in all its markets. The company has continued to hire and expand, and report [a] first full year of profitability.’

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This post first appeared on Dailymail.co.uk

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