Russian VTB Bank launches online car marketplace

Russian VTB Bank launches online car marketplace
Traffic on St Petersburg's Nevsky Prospekt. / Satbir Singh London
By bne IntelliNews February 4, 2020

Russia’s second-largest bank VTB Bank has launched an online car marketplace in partnership with ILSA, an aggregator of 871 official dealers in 71 Russian cities.

Customers are able to book a car from ILSA and apply online for a loan, but still would still need to come to a VTB branch or a car showroom. But VTB plans to make the whole service purely online. 

BCS Global Markets comments that other banks are also interested in such a service, with Sberbank and TCS Group aiming to launch a marketplace for new and used cars this year. Sovcombank (Russia’s 13th largest bank) already operates a similar marketplace.

"The new service may save some costs, decreasing the bank’s physical presence at dealerships, albeit we expect no significant impact in the short term," BCS GM commented, seeing the news as neutral for VTB.

As reported by bne IntelliNews, in 2019 VTB said it aimed to bridge the digital development gap with Sberbank, Russia's largest bank and tech giant wannabe are aiming to unite all services under Sber's branded ecosystem. VTB also said it intended to launch an open "super app" IT platform to unite financial and consumer services in 3Q20, planning to invest RUB2.5bn ($40mn).