Societe Generale-owned retail brokerage Selftrade won regulatory clearance from the Financial Services Authority (FSA) to launch a British retail bank.

Selftrade, the UK subsidiary of the French bank-owned Boursorama, said on Thursday it had been granted by the FSA permission to start taking deposits, enabling it to offer retail banking products such as investment trusts.

Selftrade will be the first online broker in the U.K. market to provide customers with retail banking and savings products and services, said Inès-Claire Mercereau, chairman and CEO of Boursorama.

Selftrade said in an emailed statement its first foray into British banking-type products would be a cash Individual Savings Account (ISA), a tax-free investment product aimed at retail investors. The cash ISA will become available to Selftrade's 220,000 account holders next month.

Britain's fifth largest retail broker believes the ability to move funds seamlessly between a cash ISA and the share ISAs it already offers will make it unique in the UK retail banking sector.

(Editing by David Holmes)