Triodos is an ‘ethical’ bank based in the Netherlands. It also has branches in Germany, Belgium, Spain and the United Kingdom. The name ‘Triodos’ means ‘three-way approach’; for the bank, these three ways are ‘people, planet, profit’. As of 2018, Triodos has 700,000 customers.
The bank was originally founded as an anthroposophical initiative and still bases its approach on the works of Rudolf Steiner. It is the only UK commercial bank to annually list all the loans it makes.
Triodos is also committed to being ‘green’ and compensates one hundred percent of all its carbon dioxide emissions.
Triodos Products and Services
The Triodos current account costs £3 a month. Customers can manage their money via the Triodos app, available for iOS and Android devices. The accompanying debit card is made from 100% renewable materials.
Funds can be added to a Triodos account online or via bank transfer from another account. Triodos also has a Freepost service for paying in cheques.
Overdrafts of up to £2000 are available, subject to affordability checks.
Savings customers can open traditional savings accounts or can choose venture capital or ethical funding routes if they prefer. Triodos uses this money to finance projects the bank thinks will add value to the world such as solar energy or culture. The international banking team supports initiatives in the developing world.
Triodos only lends money to businesses and charities that it deems to be of social, or ecological, benefit. Other ethical banks simply refuse to lend to companies they deem ‘harmful’, but Triodos takes this one step further. Businesses that do more than 5% of their business in ‘unsustainable’ practices, or produce weapons, nuclear energy or hazardous substances, to not qualify for lending.
As a Dutch company, Triodos is authorised by the Dutch Central Bank. Its UK operations are subject to limited regulation by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA). Details of this regulation are available on request.