Prepaid debit card adoption is flourishing as more and more Americans look for alternatives to traditional bank accounts. Last year Americans loaded nearly $200 billion onto prepaid debit cards, and year-over-year growth continues at a healthy clip. Unfortunately, prepaid cards have not been a great substitute for bank accounts because they have limited functionality: making payments.
At Cachet we’re turning the tables on the situation. Working with our partners we’re rolling out innovative mobile financial apps that have the potential to make prepaid debit cards even better than bank accounts. Last year we were the first to market with a check-to-prepaid-card load mobile app. This month we unveiled a mobile money management app and technology platform called Select Mobile™ Money. Personal finance company Approved Cash Advance will be the first to use this innovative new technology, which allows consumers to manage their finances with the same ease (and devices) they use to manage most other things in their lives: their mobiles.
Select Mobile Money was officially debuted at Money2020. This annual event brings together thousands of innovators and CEOs from the worlds of banking and payments, and mobile, marketing and retail, to share and learn about trends and technologies that impact payments. From what we saw and heard (in conversations on and off the expo floor) we’re confident that Select Mobile Money answers a critical market need. It doesn’t just make prepaid debit cards function more like checking accounts. Select Mobile Money supercharges prepaid debit card programs with one easy to manage mobile application.
Select Mobile Money also has been integrated with Evolve Money, a bill-payment app that comes pre-installed on select Cricket Android phones. The Evolve app can also be downloaded from Apple Play. Evolve was created to provide cash-paying consumers a comprehensive way to pay bills, online or by using mobile devices. It connects consumers with over 10,000 billers, including major power, insurance and cable companies. Evolve customers can add funds to their prepaid accounts using either top-up cards, or by check with Cachet’s world-class mobile deposit technology.
Select Mobile Money is a white-labeled solution. Flexible and scalable, the platform can be customized to offer cardholders a variety of money management services from the convenience of their smartphones and tablets. The platform also features a unique API structure that makes it easy for program managers to integrate with mobile wallet applications.
There has been a lot of hype around mobile wallets this past year, but not much activity. One reason is that mobile wallets have been designed for consumers with credit and debit cards. That is until now. Products like Evolve place prepaid cardholders (many of whom are unbanked and underbanked) on an equal footing with the banking public, and drive revenues for prepaid providers.
Reloadable prepaid debit cards are a huge and growing market. For programs to be successful, however, they need a compelling value proposition – something that can make loyal customers out of consumers who purchase the cards. As the majority of Americans adopt smart phones, and more come to rely on the devices to manage their lives, the need will only grow for reliable mobile money tools.
We’re excited here at Cachet because we know no other prepaid card-based mobile money solution can support the range of services we do: from account information to check to card funding; and payday lending to expedited bill pay; even international money transfers. On the back end the platform is extremely robust, with features like geo-fencing and dynamic marketing, and branding. Plus program managers get the freedom and flexibility to make changes on the fly without bothersome app store reviews.
We’re excited here at Cachet about what we’ve accomplished, but we’re not done innovating. There will be other new mobile solutions coming to market soon from Cachet. So watch this space.