There are quite a few startups that market themselves as companies increasing financial literacy and safeguarding customers’ financial health, but there aren’t many of them that keep watch on a user’s credit score in realtime. And even fewer will allow users to take action directly from the app to improve that score.
Lantern Credit, a startup that will debut its product at this year’s upcoming Money 2020 conference in Las Vegas, has just partnered with the seasoned fintech startup Plaid, which provides data aggregation and infrastructure services to other financial institutions.
“This partnership with Plaid will enable realtime information,” says Chad Swenson, CEO of Lantern. “The system is dynamic and on-demand; what we’re delivering to users is the most powerful tool available [for them] to manage their personal credit.”
Among others, Plaid has partnered with Goldman Sachs and Google Ventures (as well as Spark Capital) and has built solutions for apps like Robinhood. It also has a partnership with Stripe in order to make payment processing as easy as possible for its clients.
Lantern aims to launch its product into the market before the year is out at the earliest. It should probably be freely available in the first quarter of next year, according to Swenson.
Lantern also plans to partner with banks to deliver its solution to end users, a solution which, with the help of Plaid, allows consumers to track and improve their credit score in real time. There are multitudes of apps that do one side or the other—for credit trackers Credit Karma’s extremely popular app comes to mind, and Capital One’s mobile app also features free credit scores.
What’s different about Lantern’s solution is that users can “take action via the system itself,” according to Swenson. The system applies a FICO algorithm to determine a user’s score. Users can then improve the score directly from the app by exploring tailored offers of credit, for example, or by setting credit goals like buying a car or house and working toward them.
“The intent is not only for you to take action but for you to manage your credit wellness,” says Swenson. “It doesn’t matter what economic level you are; people have issues [managing credit].”
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