SYDNEY, AAP – The Commonwealth Bank has bought stakes in an online shopping group and power retailer as it tries to keep pace with innovative online rivals.

The nation’s biggest bank has invested $30 million in shopping site Little Birdie and $20 million in power provider Amber, gaining stakes of 23 per cent and 25 per cent respectively.

These services will be available via online banking.

Boss Matt Comyn said providing more services would encourage use of the online channels.

Afterpay is one example of an online-only rival which has linked with Westpac to expand the services available to users.


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Little Birdie will help shoppers search and compare more than 70 million products. Businesses can better target and advertise promotions to consumers.

Amber claims to offer consumers electricity at wholesale rates while charging a monthly access fee.

These are not the first online ventures for the Commonwealth.

The bank offers apps such as Home-in for home buyers, Credit Savvy for credit-score checking and Backr for those starting a business.

All are promoted to customers through online banking channels.

The Commonwealth is also trialling giving customers the ability to see details of other bank accounts in the CommBank app.

This has been prompted by government efforts to give consumers more ability to compare products under the Consumer Data Right.

The bank has 7.5 million customers who use its online banking.

CBA shares were lower by 0.6 per cent to $98.98 at 1526 AEST.