Gamification in Fintech: How Startup Greenlight Financial Intends to Use It

EXCLUSIVE – One thing is clear: more and more fintechs are looking to create better interaction to engage users. Besides the obvious social media channels, another social phenomenon which seems to be advancing is gamification.

One such fintech is Greenlight Financial Technology. The startup was launched in January this year by Tim Sheehan, who formerly co-led Yahoo Finance. The company focuses on enabling parents to transfer money to their children through a seamless digital medium. Right now the company has a debit card, powered by MasterCard, which allows a parent to grant as much as $1,000 to their child. That amount can be replenished once spent instantly.  A family is allowed up to five cards per family.

The mobile app, available on both Android and Apple, lets parents instantly send money and allocate funds to specific purchases. With four patents, Greenlight also lets parents allocate these funds to specific stores.

For example, a parent can transfer $500 to their child to be used only for text books at their college bookstore only. This is done through a Greenlight’s patent which allows it to be integrated into the authorization scheme of payment.

“The goal of the company is to help parents raise financially intelligent kids,” Sheehan told Bank Innovation.

One way to achieve this vision of providing parents tools to better educate their kids on finance is through gamification. Although Sheehan declined to provide specifics, one can imagine this will involve rewards, emojis, and other interactive tactics.

Greenlight is looking beyond debit cards and will be rolling out new products related to savings, credit and investing starting next month.

Whether these tools will be purely educational and ‘gamified,’ or whether they will have tangible applications such as allowing users to make actual investments or open a savings account via-a-via Greenlight, Sheehan would not say.

The Greenlight debit card is both a physical card and a digital one. The app has no age limits, but a typical “kid” by Greenlight’s customer base is between the ages of 12-22 years old. Greenlight’s banking partner is Community Federal Savings Bank.

Back in May, Greenlight announced a $7.5 million in seed funding led by Canadian Relay Ventures. Other investors included Social Capital, NEA, and TTV.

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