Monzo
Monzo, run by founder Tom Blomfield, raised £93m in two separate rounds Credit: Paul Grover for the Telegraph

Investment in online finance start-ups hit an all-time high last year of close to £20bn, in a threat to the dominance of traditional high street banks.

An explosion in mobile banking and digital transactions has put lenders with big branch networks on the defensive, as consumers increasingly try services from fast-growing online competitors, such as mobile bank Monzo or foreign exchange service Revolut.

A report by consultancy Accenture shows global investment in so-called financial technology (fintech) companies hit a record high of $27.4bn (£19.8bn) in 2017, up 18pc on the prior year. Funding for the sector has reached $97.7bn since 2010.

Deal values quadrupled in Britain to $3.4bn, while the US saw a 31pc jump to $11.3bn. Much of the investment into the two countries came from “big new investment flows” from China, Russia, the Middle East and other emerging economies, the report found. India also saw a nearly five-fold surge in investment to $2.4bn.

Major fundraisings in the UK last year included digital insurance distributor BGL Group…