- Generation Z, those born between 1996 and 2010, is coming of age.
- There are 68 million Gen Zers in the US, and in the coming years they’ll replace Millennials as the newest generation of workers and consumers.
- From childhood allowances to college finances, fintechs are looking for ways to tap into this group of consumers who are starting to enter the workforce.
- Here are seven startups focused on personal finance targeting Generation Z.
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Generation Z is coming of age.
There are 68 million Gen Z consumers in the US, and they hold up to $143 billion in spending power, according to Business Insider Intelligence. In the coming years, Gen Z — the cohort born between 1996 and 2010 — will replace Millennials as the newest generation of workers and consumers.
As the oldest members of Gen Z are starting to graduate from college and enter the workforce, fintechs and banks alike are vying for their business.
When it comes to personal finance — not something most teens think much about — fintechs are looking for ways to win Gen Z over as customers. And gaining users early is key, given consumers start to develop brand loyalty in their early 20s.
Most of Gen Z, often called the smartphone generation, doesn’t remember a time before the internet, so fintechs are pursuing digital and mobile-first strategies. Fintechs are also looking to get involved in Gen Z’s finances well before college, offering mobile-forward spending apps for kids.
From parent-monitored allowances paid to digital wallets to loans for college students, here are seven fintechs eyeing Gen Z.
Boro is an app-based lender targeted at college students. It lends students up to $2,000 for terms ranging between one to 12 months at rates up to 19.9%. Boro also offers auto loans. Its loans are marketed as an alternative to credit cards, with no annual fees and clear repayment plans including fixed interest rates.
Boro was founded in 2015 as an alternative credit product for international students in the US. It’s since broadened its target customer to all college students, and has over 50,000 users, according to its website.
The Chicago-based fintech has raised $114 million to-date from investors including Arcadia Funds, the Evolve Foundation, and Knights Genesis.
Greenlight offers a debit card for kids. Parents can give allowances, pay for chores, and even specify which stores their kids can shop at. Kids also have the ability to set aside money in savings and earn parent-paid interest.
The service costs $4.99 per month, which includes Mastercard debit cards for up to five kids. Greenlight has over 500,000 members, according to its website.
The Atlanta-based fintech launched in 2017 and has raised $81 million to-date from investors including Drive Capital, JPMorgan, and Wells Fargo.
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GoHenry offers an account for parents, from which they can give their kids debit cards. Parents can monitor and control spending and issue allowances. Kids can complete chores to get paid and set up savings goals.
It costs $3.99 per month per child. GoHenry has over 500,000 members in the UK and US, according to its website.
GoHenry has raised over $15 million, all crowd-funded, since its launch in 2012.
Jassby markets itself as the chores and allowances app. In the app, parents can set up recurring payments tied to chores, and kids can request money.
Kids can then shop in-app through the Jassby Mall at partner merchants like Apple, American Eagle, and Domino’s Pizza. The app is free to use.
The Massachusetts-based fintech was founded in 2017 and has raised $5 million to-date from investors including Blumberg Capital and Correlation Ventures.
Pluto Money is a free personal finance management fintech for college students. It tracks users’ spending, lets them set goals and challenges, and offers anonymized peer comparisons on spending habits.
The app links into users’ bank accounts to analyze spending habits, then gamifies saving through suggested challenges for users to spend less on things like coffee and eating out. Users can then put cash in their Pluto accounts to save toward goals like spring break travel and paying off debt.
Founded by two recent UCLA grads in 2017, the San Francisco-based startup is an alumnus of Barclay’s Accelerator and has raised over $120,000 to-date in seed funding.
Step is a mobile-based digital bank for Gen Z. Specifically targeted toward teenagers, Step wants to be the first bank account and debit card for its users.
It offers a checking account and a Mastercard-powered debit card. Step doesn’t charge fees, and its accounts are FDIC insured by partner bank Evolve Bank & Trust.
It debuted in January last year, amassing a waitlist of over 500,000 potential users. It’s $22 million Series A was led by $36 billion fintech Stripe last July, with participation from Crosslink Capital and Will Smith’s Dreamer’s Fund. The Palo Alto-based startup has raised $26 million to-date.
Read more: Meet the under-the-radar startups raising millions by helping big brands like Sephora upend customer rewards with cash and celebrities — and why they’re so effective
ThriveCash lends to college students and recent grads to make ends meet between the end of the school year and the start of their internships or full-time jobs. It can help students cover things like flights, moving expenses, and living expenses before they start working.
Students can send ThriveCash their offer letters to secure lines of credit up to $25,000. Users can borrow up to 25% of their total internship pay, or up to 25% of the first three months’ salary for full-time jobs. Instead of interest, users pay a monthly fee based on how much they borrow, starting at $7 for every $1,000 drawn.
The San Francisco-based startup was founded in 2017 and has raised $10 million to-date from investors including Craft Ventures and Affirm CEO Max Levchin.
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