Coolest Brands 2016: SoFi

Unbanking the World

© Can Stock Photo Inc. / viperagpFintech companies don’t want to disrupt banks anymore — that’s so 2012. Now it’s all about partnering, right?

Not so fast. Social Finance, known as SoFi, DOES want to disrupt finance. It wants you to divorce your bank, and join CEO Mike Cagney and company at the unBank.

“Your bank is not your friend, and that’s a problem,” Cagney, a former banker at Wells Fargo, said recently. SoFi picked up a cool $1 billion in funding last year to build something entirely new — an alternative lender that plans to offer a full suite of banking products. If SoFi has its way, its customers, the first of which were student loan refinancers, won’t need to deal with banks ever again. Cagney is telling that story over and over again. If SoFi isn’t yet synonymous with “uh, oh” for bankers, it soon might.

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