UniCredit is set to launch a smartphone-only bank in Italy using FICO’s decision management platform.

The new bank, dubbed buddybank, will provide current accounts, credit/debit cards and contextual and instant personal loans, and a concierge service, accessible via chat and phone.

The bank will leverage the FICO Decision Management Suite to instantly verify customers and manage credit decisions in originations, customer management, collections as well as fraud.

Plans are on to eventually launch the mobile banking service in the US, and other countries in Europe.

UniCredit buddybank founder Angelo D'Alessandro said: "We evaluated providers that offered systems for each segment of the customer lifecycle, but FICO offers not just products but expertise across the lifecycle.

"FICO is a partner that is committed to our goals of providing the best service to our customers, and will help us launch buddybank on time and on budget. FICO's decision management technology is part of what will make buddybank the most innovative new lifestyle bank."

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The new mobile-only bank will be wholly owned by UniCredit, and is expected to launch in early 2017.

FICO general manager for Europe, the Middle East and Africa Steve Hadaway said: "For start-ups like this, having one integrated decision management solution not only enables a quick launch, it provides the best way to make customer-level credit decisions and deliver a superior customer experience."