Kakao Bank Easily Went Up K-Bank's Record-Breaking Run

Lori Park, July 31, 2017, 9:33 a.m.

Kakao Bank, Korea's second Internet-only bank, is off to a flying start with over 470,000 new accounts opened in just 32 hours.

The country's second online bank opened its doors at 7 a.m. last Thursday, and at 3 p.m. the following day it was well on its way to hitting the 500,000 mark.

The pace is even more remarkable when compared to K-Bank, the first online-only bank in Korea, which despite doing roaring business took two weeks to reach the 250,000 mark.

Kakao drew W135 billion in deposits and lent W92 billion over less than two days, while K-Bank took a month to have W300 billion deposited and lend W200 billion (US$1=W1,122).

Kakao Bank pays two percent interest on one-year savings, a bit more than existing banks, and charges a minimum interest rate of less than three percent on personal loans.

"K-Bank familiarized people with online-only banks, but Kakao was able to cash in on that because [messenger app] Kakao Talk is so much part of people's daily life here," a banking insider said.

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