Start-up financial technology company Goalsetter raised $ 3.9 million in a startup round that included top stars of the National Basketball Association and billionaire chairman of investment firm Vista Equity Partners, Robert F. Smith.
The company said the funds would be used to expand its mobile application platform and accelerate subscriber growth. Kevin Durant of the Brooklyn Nets and Chris Paul of Phoenix Suns are investors. They are joined by former NBA player Baron Davis, former New York Yankees pitcher C.C. Sabathia.
In an interview with CNBC on Friday, Tanya Van Court, founder and CEO of goalkeepersaid the company has other corporate partnerships that will be announced this year. She added that the company will announce a unique initiative to promote the app near Black History Month in February.
Goalsetter is a mobile banking app that enables peer-to-peer transactions. Users can also deposit funds on bank cards for purchases. Van Court, a former Nickelodeon executive, said the goalkeeper’s uniqueness focuses on financial literacy, especially among black youth.
Tanya Van Court, CEO of Goalsetter.
Van Court referred to 2017 statistic from Progressive Now, a not-for-profit think tank group that researched economic opportunities for low-income areas, and found that 70% of “black and Latin American households have what it takes to be middle-class Could fall below the threshold of 68,000 US dollars “. compared to around 40% of white households.
The report said that if wealth inequalities persist, the “median black household wealth will be on the way to zero by 2053,” while the latino median home could be zero by 2073.
According to Van Court, the app can help tackle wealth inequality with austerity measures and promote “delayed gratification” by helping families meet the financial goal and limit spending.
One of Goalsetter’s features is “Learn Before You Burn,” which allows parents to block debit cards until their kids have completed weekly financial literacy quizzes.
“When you turn on this tool, your kids’ debit card will automatically freeze on Sunday mornings if they haven’t taken their financial literacy quiz for the week,” said Van Court. “And it will thaw again when the child takes their financial quiz Education completed. “
For younger users, the Learn To Earn feature allows parents to put money into accounts for allowances and rewards for correct quiz answers on their financial tests.
With her background as the director of NickJr.com, Van Court developed the quizzes for children and teenagers that combine cultural and kid-friendly content with financial literacy.
“We use humor, lyrics, personalities that children can relate to, hip-hop and culture to explain key concepts of financial literacy,” said Van Court. “We are seeing this resonate with children.”
She praised the athletes for investing in the goalkeeper and supporting a black-owned company.
“It means so much that they are putting money behind a black-owned company when we all know that black-women owned companies were the last on the totem pole of venture capitalists,” said Van Court.
“It’s bigger than just a check,” she added. “They are investing in the next generation of children to make sure they learn a financial education. To make sure they learn to save early and develop savings habits. But they are also investing in the structure of property in Black America.”
The goal setter will also use a business-to-consumer model and rely on sponsorship revenue to generate a profit. Transaction fees make up part of income, and users can also donate using a “pay what you think is fair” system.
“We know we’re as attractive to the children of Morgan Stanley employees as we are to the children of McDonald’s employees,” said Van Court. “We believe everyone on the spectrum will sign up for the goalkeeper.
“Those who can afford to pay will pay for themselves and their children. And the truth is, they will probably pay a little more and subsidize those families who cannot afford to pay. And those who who cannot afford it. ” it will still be on goalkeeper. “
She said banks are also in talks about “white labeling” agreements with Goalsetter. The model asks the company to sell some of its software to companies who then rename it around their app.
“The nice thing about Goalsetter is that we’re not just good for black and tan kids,” said Van Court. “We’re good for all children and we have a lot of children from many different ethnic backgrounds on our platform.”