Ready For An iBank?
UK-based strategic marketing and research consultancy firm KAE picked the brains of over 5,000 clients on both sides of the pond, and discovered something that might rattle the cages of Wall Street bankers.
One in ten surveyed said that if computing and multimedia services giant Apple had a bank of its own, they'd seriously consider depositing their hard-earned dollars into it.
As though the $600/share (with as much as $1,650 a share predicted over the next 3 years) and the unusual difficulty of trying to figure out how to spend a surplus $100 Billion wasn't enough reason for other companies to hate Apple.
I've seen a number of articles on this, focusing on the one in ten figure as abysmally small, not even worth noting in a study.
Unless, of course, you consider what percentage of folks bank with industry giant Bank of America in one way or another. In a 2009 Wall Street Journal article, Bank of America was cited as servicing just over 12% of the U.S. population's banking accounts, placing them at #5 in bank size. To be fair, the more current KAE study finds 23% of Americans have an account tied to Bank of America. Many Americans, however, are tied to BofA based on their mortgage, and not necessarily through a daily checking account.
With those numbers, Fast Company estimates that if Apple launched an iBank, they'd have approximately 37 million customers almost immediately. With an average American bank balance of $3,800, we're looking at a possible first month $140 Billion iBank valuation. I'd have to agree that those numbers are nothing to scoff at.
When questioning those who actually owned Apple devices, the 10% number in KAE's study that would welcome an iBank with open arms jumped to 43% - an even more impressive figure.
Either way, an iBank with just 10% share in the US and UK would give JP Morgan Chase (11% banking share), Barclay's (14%) and Lloyd's (18%) a run for their money. Add in enhanced iPhone and iPad connectivity, banking services through an iTunes-like interface, and near field connected banking using iOS devices and things just might get ugly for Wall Street's banking old-timers.
I can understand those questioning why such a survey even needed to be conducted. Could this study be Apple floating a trial balloon, to test the waters for a financial offering? Only time will tell.
How about you? Would you consider moving your financial assets to Apple, or has anything with an 'i' in front of it turned you off?