Over the past 3 months, I have developed an interest in the wave of new fintech products, startups and businesses that are cropping up at an astronomical rate. And it’s safe to say, that it’s an incredibly exciting place to be right now.
Why the sudden interest in financial technology? Firstly, I have always wanted to do more with my money than just save it or stick it in a pension. Secondly, I am huge fan of Tony Robbins. Yes, I know, you’ve probably seen his motivational seminars - getting the like of Oprah Winfrey and Hugh Jackman to walk over hot coals and have an auditorium of going crazy as if it’s a rock concert. But at his core, Tony Robbins is a strategist. Not only does he excel at taking the most complex problems, and breaking them down into the simplest of steps, but he is one of the most well-connected individuals in the financial world with access to the worlds top investors including the likes of Warren Buffet, Ray Dalio, Carl Icahn and Paul Tudor Jones.
So, when I watched Frank Kern’s interview with Tony, not only was I excited to hear that Tony had released a book Money: Master The Game, but I was dumbfounded at some of the startling facts about the financial industry and how easy it is to become an investor due to the rise in technology. I was hanging on every word. Even if you have zero interest in investing, this book is a game-changer for your finances. Not only that, but 100% of the money raised from the book is going straight to charity, so not only do you sort your finances out, but you are doing a good deed in the process.
After reading the book, I started doing my own research into some of the hottest new fintech startups, products, apps, business, charities…the list goes on. Not only that, but I discovered a lot of these great ideas are happening right here in our backyard. Here are my favourites that I have discovered on this financial journey, some of which I have already begun using, and some of which I can’t wait to start using!
Nutmeg – www.nutmeg.com
Now, I am going to be a bit biased here as I have started using Nutmeg recently, but its probably my favourite on this list. If you have always been interested in investing, but never done so, Nutmeg is a great place to get started. They provide you with a platform to invest your money in a fully-managed, diversified portfolio with as little as £1,000. With a great design, a range of easy-to-use tools and the peace of mind that a team of experts with a wealth of experience are handling your investment, this is an incredibly disruptive service that is going to bring investing to the masses - you can even transfer your ISAs and pension to them too.
Funding Circle – www.fundingcircle.com
Whether you are a business owner looking for a loan, or someone like me who is interested in investing, then you should check out Funding Circle. In essence, business owners post their loan request on Funding Circle, and investors can then choose which type of business to lend to, and through an auction process, bid the amount of money they wish to lend, and the interest they want to earn. With close to £1 billion already invested in UK businesses and an estimated return of 7.2%, it's an excellent way of investing in up and coming businesses.
LendInvest – www.lendinvest.com
Essentially the same idea as Funding Circle above - peer-to-peer investing, but strictly within the property market. By being able to invest with as little as £100, and use their auto-invest service you don’t even need to have knowledge of the property market or the bank balance of Lord Sugar to do so!
Atom Bank – www.atombank.co.uk
Finally, it looks like their is a serious contender to bring banks into the 21st century without all the rigamarole that goes with it. Atom Bank is a new digital bank, they may not be open for business yet, but I can’t wait. They are based in the UK and have no branches. All of your banking is done through your smartphone, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The way I definitely want to bank. I am waiting with bated breath.
Seedrs – www.seedrs.com
Another service I have recently begun using is Seedrs. It is similar to Kickstarter but it is a platform that allows businesses to raise funding in exchange for equity. It’s fantastic. Not only is it a great idea, but the minimum investment is only £10! Seedrs are on a mission to bring investing in businesses and entrepreneurs and sharing their success to the masses, and so far they are doing it incredibly well! Even Andy Murray has invested in businesses through Seedrs and has invested in Seedrs themselves.
Acorns – www.acorns.com
Acorns is one of these ideas where you go ‘why didn’t I think of that?’ Acorns allows you to automatically invest your spare change from purchases into a diversified portfolio. Simple idea, beautifully designed and potentially life-changing outcome. However, there is a downside. It is currently unavailable in the UK. Fingers crossed they make it across the pond or an equivalent pops up.
Got any others that you would recommend?
I guess I should also say I am not a financial advisor and that your investing your money, so your money will probably go up and down and your capital is at risk n all that jazz.