Simplii Financial

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Simplii Financial
Simplii Financial branding.jpg
Product typeFinancial services
OwnerCanadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC)
CountryToronto, Ontario, Canada
IntroducedNovember 1, 2017

Simplii Financial is a Canadian direct bank and the digital banking division of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC). It offers no-fee chequing and savings accounts, a VISA credit card, Guaranteed Investment Certificates (GICs), mortgages and mutual funds. These savings and investment products are also eligible for registration under a Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) or a Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP).

As of 2023, the bank has almost two million clients.[1]

In 2021, Simplii Financial became the first in Canadian banking to enable digital identity verification – giving international students and newcomers the opportunity to open accounts completely digitally before arriving in Canada.[2]


Simplii Financial was established following CIBC and the supermarket chain Loblaw Companies mutually deciding to end their 20-year joint venture of providing consumer banking services under the President's Choice Financial brand.[3][4]

As a completely online banking service, Simplii Financial has no branch locations. Simplii customers can withdraw and deposit cash and cheques at all CIBC ATMs for no fee.

Simplii Financial shares Institution Number 010 with its parent CIBC. Its SWIFT/BIC code is CIBCCATT, and all Simplii clients share a branch-transit number of 30800.

As a division of CIBC, Simplii Financial is insured under the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC).


Simplii traces its history back to the 1996 President's Choice Financial co-venture between CIBC and Loblaws to provide low-fee banking services. President's Choice Financial operated out of pavilions in various Loblaw-owned supermarkets but had no formal branches; instead, CIBC and PCF customers could use either brands' bank machines for no charge. In August 2017 the two co-venture partners decided to end the relationship.[4]

Effective November 1, 2017 all two million President's Choice Financial bank accounts – as well as loans, mortgages, and investments – were transferred to Simplii, with Loblaws retaining their credit card portfolio issued by the separately chartered President's Choice Bank.[5][6] Because CIBC was already the account provider for PCF bank accounts and other consumer products (excluding credit card and insurance services),[7] all account numbers and terms remained the same.[8] The first day of operations for the Simplii brand saw glitches in the mobile banking app, long call centre wait times, and customers reporting confusion about when to expect their new debit cards.[9] The division switched customers to new cards in March 2018, with some complaints about temporarily frozen accounts.[10]

In May 2018, Simplii and the Bank of Montreal were targets of hackers who claimed to have compromised the systems of both banks and stolen information on an originally-reported 90,000 combined customers.[11] It was later confirmed that BMO had over 110,000 clients impacted by the data breach, while about 10,000 Simplii customers were affected by the hack.[12] An email sent from a Russian address and attributed to the hackers demanded a US$1 million ransom paid via Ripple by end of day on May 28, 2018 or the stolen information would be released.[13] Two men from Montreal were later arrested in September 2020 by RCMP for the cyberattacks and charged with unauthorized use of a computer, identity theft and possession of a device to obtain unauthorized use of computers.[14]

About 1,200 Simplii customers had their accounts withdrawn in the attack, with the financial institution immediately returning all funds to its clients.[15] Simplii offered its affected customers credit monitoring and identity theft insurance for free at the time of the breach, while also gifting $100 prepaid VISA cards in goodwill.[16]

In June 2018, it was reported that there were proposed class-action lawsuits filed against Simplii Financial and BMO for the data breaches,[17] which were settled in April 2021. The parties agreed to settle the action against BMO for $21.2 million, and against Simplii’s parent-company CIBC for $1.8 million. [18]

Simplii Financial was listed in Forbes magazine's World's Best Banks 2019 list, which also ranked it the third best bank in Canada.[19]

Products & Services[edit]

  • Banking accounts – No fee chequing, high interest savings and USD savings accounts along with e-Transfers, mobile and online banking options
  • Mortgages – variable and fixed residential
  • Line of credit – personal loans, secured lines of credit and creditor insurance
  • Credit card – Simplii Financial Cash Back Visa Card
  • Investment products including GICs, RRSPs, TFSAs and mutual funds
  • Simplii Financial Visa Digital Gift Card
  • Global money transfers


Since being founded in 2017, Simplii Financial has captured the most digital-banking awards, and was one of the major winners across all Canadian financial institutions and banking brands in the 2022 Ipsos Financial Service Excellence Awards with three wins.[20]

The Ipsos Financial Service Excellence Awards included a win for Mobile Banking Excellence, fulfilling digital banking needs that became more pronounced in recent years.

The full list of winning categories for Simplii Financial in 2022 were:

  • Value for Money
  • Recommend to Family and Friends
  • Mobile Banking Excellence

Simplii Financial has also been voted by clients as one of Forbes’ World’s Best Banks in Canada four years in a row (2019, 2020, 2021, 2022).[21][22][23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "About us". Simplii Financial. May 31, 2023.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  2. ^ "Simplii Financial first Canadian banking brand to enable international students and newcomers to set up banking before moving to Canada". Yahoo Finance. January 6, 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  3. ^ Evans, Pete (August 16, 2017). "CIBC to swallow PC Financial's banking business, rebrand as Simplii". CBC News. Retrieved August 16, 2017.
  4. ^ a b "CIBC to launch Simplii direct banking brand, integrate PC Financial accounts". CTV News. The Canadian Press. August 16, 2017. Retrieved August 16, 2017.
  5. ^ "PC Financial MasterCard Credit Cards". Financefeat. 2019-03-18. Retrieved 2019-03-30.
  6. ^ "Where does the CIBC-PC Financial breakup leave consumers?". CBC News. August 17, 2017. Retrieved August 19, 2017.
  7. ^ "Personal Banking Frequent Asked Questions (FAQs)". President's Choice Financial. Archived from the original on August 19, 2017. Retrieved August 19, 2017. President's Choice Financial personal banking services are provided by the direct banking division of CIBC. President's Choice Financial is a registered trademark of Loblaws Inc., and CIBC is a licensee of the mark. In this FAQ, "we", "us" and "our" refer to the direct banking division of CIBC.
  8. ^ "What's coming for President's Choice Financial customers when CIBC sets up Simplii". The Hamilton Spectator. The Canadian Press. August 17, 2017. Retrieved August 19, 2017.
  9. ^ "CIBC sees bumpy transition of PC Financial accounts to Simplii". Global News. The Canadian Press. November 1, 2017. Retrieved November 2, 2017.
  10. ^ Pelley, Lauren (March 31, 2018). "Former PC Financial customers say frozen Simplii bank accounts causing 'undue hardship'". CBC News.
  11. ^ Ligaya, Armina (May 28, 2018). "BMO and CIBC's Simplii says fraudsters may have accessed clients' information". Toronto Star. The Canadian Press. Retrieved May 29, 2018.
  12. ^ "Two Canadian banks could pay up to $23 million to settle lawsuits in 2018 hacks". Financial Post. January 18, 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  13. ^ "Hackers threaten to reveal personal data of 90,000 Canadians caught in bank hack". CBC News. May 29, 2018. Retrieved May 29, 2018.
  14. ^ Solomon, Howard (January 18, 2022). "Montrealers charged with hacking three major Canadian companies". IT World Canada.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  15. ^ "Simplii bank hack left Sarnia man with $2.86 in his account". CBC News. June 2, 2018.
  16. ^ "Two Canadian banks could pay up to $23 million to settle lawsuits in 2018 hacks". Financial Post. January 18, 2022.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  17. ^ "Proposed class-action lawsuits filed against BMO, CIBC's Simplii Financial". Toronto Star. The Canadian Press. June 18, 2018.
  18. ^ Langton, James (January 18, 2022). "Court approves data breach settlements with BMO, CIBC". Investment Executive.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  19. ^ "Simplii Financial". Forbes. February 26, 2019. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  20. ^ "Simplii Financial". Simplii Financial. November 30, 2022.
  21. ^ "Forbes 2021 World's Best Banks". January 5, 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  22. ^ "Simplii FinancialTM named as one of Forbes' World's Best Banks for second year" (PDF). January 5, 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  23. ^ "Forbes 2022 World's Best Banks". November 30, 2022.

External links[edit]