French banking group BNP Paribas has agreed to acquire a 95% stake in Financiere des Paiements Electroniques (FPE), which runs French online bank Compte-Nickel, for an undisclosed sum.

Since its launch, over 540,000 accounts were opened with Compte-Nickel. Following this deal, Compte-Nickel aims to accelerate customer acquisition and open two million accounts by 2020.

The deal is subject to a consultation process with the works council and regulatory approvals.  FPE’s general management team will remain unchanged following the deal.

FPE chairman Hugues Le Bret said: “Since its creation in 2013, Compte-Nickel has grown thanks to the support of the Confédération des Buralistes de France, alongside our shareholders and staff. In order to pursue our new ambition, joining forces with a top-rank financial player was a matter of course.

“As a partner of choice for startup companies, BNP Paribas was immediately able to grasp the relevance of our positioning, our need for agility in developing our business model, and the resources required to drive our growth. Our brand, our values and our disruptive culture all remain unchanged.”

BNP Paribas said that the deal will complement its existing offering from its branch network and its digital bank Hello bank!.

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BNP Paribas Group deputy COO Thierry Laborde said: “The Compte-Nickel offering will remain distinct from, and complementary to, the products and services provided by the    BNP Paribas branch network and Hello bank! Like all the startups with which we have already long-term cooperation, Compte-Nickel will remain independent from the rest of the Group.”