Upgrade launches checking accounts and debit cards

Fintech startup Upgrade has been positioning itself as a neobank. And yet, the company has mostly been focused on personal loans and more recently credit cards. You couldn’t just replace your bank account with Upgrade. Upgrade is adding two important missing pieces of the puzzle with checking accounts and debit cards.

With today’s launch, Upgrade competes more directly with other challenger banks, such as Chime, N26 and others. You can open a checking account, control it from a mobile app, send and receive money from that account.

There are no monthly fees and no minimum account balance. Under the hood, Cross River Bank provides FDIC-insured checking accounts.

You also get a debit card with your checking account. When it comes to ATM withdrawals, Upgrade will reimburse ATM fees for its most loyal customers up to five times a month. You need to maintain a minimum balance or set up direct payroll deposit for that feature.

Debit card payments on subscriptions and common everyday expenses let you earn 2% cash back. Eligible purchases include convenience stores, gas stations, restaurants, food deliveries, etc. Your earn 1% on other debit charges.

Rewards on debit card transactions are somewhat uncommon. Most financial companies focus on credit card rewards as the interchange fees on credit card transactions are much higher. Debit cards don’t generate as much interchange revenue.

“Neobanks in particular cannot pay high rewards (or any rewards at all) on debit cards because the interchange fee is often their only source of revenue,” Upgrade CEO Renaud Laplanche told me in an email.

And interchange fees can add up if you manage to attract millions of customers. According to The Information, Chime generated more than $ 600 million in revenue last year thanks to interchange fees.

The company still plans to generate the vast majority of its revenue from credit products. “Our strategy is to monetize our base through credit,” Laplanche said.

Upgrade also offers a credit card with 1.5% cash back on all purchases. If, for one reason or another, you can’t pay your monthly balance payment, the company helps you combine monthly charges into installment plans that you can pay back over 24 to 60 months. You pay down your balance at a fixed rate with equal monthly payments. Upgrade customers who use the company’s checking account will get lower rates on Upgrade loans.

You can also get a personal loan from Upgrade without a credit card or a checking account. And maybe you’ll end up discovering Upgrade’s other products after signing up to a personal loan.

Image Credits: Upgrade

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[Rewire in CardRates] Rewire Offers Seamless Money Transfers and a Debit Card for Easy Access to Global Banking Services

Rewire is a neobank for migrants that offers a seamless way to make cross-border money transfers in Europe, among many other services. Customers receive a free international bank account number (IBAN) and a free Mastercard debit card that works like a conventional domestic bank account. Migrant workers often occupy two financial worlds — they pay bills where they’re living, but they also often help support people back in their home country. Rewire brings financial management into the mainstream for a growing number of those consumers — especially in Asia and Africa.

Read more here.

The post [Rewire in CardRates] Rewire Offers Seamless Money Transfers and a Debit Card for Easy Access to Global Banking Services appeared first on OurCrowd Blog.

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Crypto wallet app ZenGo to launch debit card

ZenGo, a mobile app to manage your cryptocurrencies, is about to launch a Visa debit card in the U.S. This isn’t the first crypto-powered debit card — Coinbase announced a U.S. expansion for its debit card just last week. But ZenGo is a non-custodial wallet, which means that you’re in control of your crypto assets.

When you leave your crypto assets on an exchange, somebody could log in to your account and send your assets to other wallets. Sure, there are some security features, such as email validation and two-factor authentication. But you’re essentially relying on the security team of your favorite exchange.

ZenGo and other non-custodial wallets put you in charge of security. You’re acting as your own crypto bank. It makes it more complicated to create a debit card as ZenGo can’t send and convert cryptocurrencies for you.

ZenGo is joining Visa’s Fintech Fast Track program with the intention to release its payment card in early 2021. While the card will initially launch in the U.S. only, the startup already plans to release it in other countries.

As ZenGo has no idea what cryptocurrencies you own, you’ll have to convert your crypto to USD first. In the mobile app, you’ll be able to convert some funds to fiat (such as USD) and deposit that amount on your card. If you plan to use your card regularly, you’ll be able to convert a fixed amount every week.

Compared to other crypto-powered cards, there’s an additional conversion step. “The issue if you do it automatically like Coinbase is that you can’t pick which crypto you want to use for spending. They decide for you or they force you to make a choice once for all your transactions,” ZenGo co-founder and CEO Ouriel Ohayon told me.

Additionally, anything that remains in your ZenGo wallet can’t be used with your card. Even if your card is compromised, your crypto assets remain safe.

ZenGo already lets you acquire cryptocurrencies in the app through partnerships with MoonPay and Coinmama. Thanks to the debit card, the startup will have both on-ramps and off-ramps with support for fiat-to-crypto and crypto-to-fiat conversions.

Startups – TechCrunch

Coinbase lets you withdraw funds to your debit card

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is adding a new way to withdraw funds from your Coinbase account. If you’ve added a compatible debit card to your account, you can transfer USD, EUR or GBP to your bank account nearly instantly.

There are some drawbacks, and the main one is that you’ll pay a lot of fees. In the U.S., Coinbase deducts 1.5% from the transaction, or a minimum $ 0.55 if it’s a small transaction. In the U.K. and Europe, you pay 2% in fees or a minimum fee of £0.45/€0.52, respectively.

You also need to have a compatible card. Not all debit cards support incoming transfers. You need to have a Visa card that supports Visa Fast Funds. In the U.S., you can also use a Mastercard card with Mastercard Send.

It’s hard to know whether your bank or card issuer support those features. The best way to figure it out is probably by adding your card to Coinbase and seeing what Coinbase says.

Coinbase isn’t removing other withdrawal methods. For instance, if you’re looking for a cheaper way to withdraw your funds in Europe, a SEPA bank transfer costs €0.15 per transfer. And Coinbase supports instant SEPA transfers if your bank has enabled that.

The company also lets you link your PayPal account with your Coinbase account. Your funds should hit your PayPal account within a few seconds, and there are no fees on Coinbase’s side.

As you can see, there are many ways to move money from your bank account to your Coinbase account. Some of them are slower than others, some of them are more expensive than others. Crypto-to-crypto transactions are a bit simpler by comparison, as you only need your recipient’s wallet address to send tokens.

Image Credits: Coinbase

Startups – TechCrunch

Coinbase lets you withdraw funds to your debit card

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is adding a new way to withdraw funds from your Coinbase account. If you’ve added a compatible debit card to your account, you can transfer USD, EUR or GBP to your bank account nearly instantly.

There are some drawbacks, and the main one is that you’ll pay a lot of fees. In the U.S., Coinbase deducts 1.5% from the transaction, or a minimum $ 0.55 if it’s a small transaction. In the U.K. and Europe, you pay 2% in fees or a minimum fee of £0.45/€0.52, respectively.

You also need to have a compatible card. Not all debit cards support incoming transfers. You need to have a Visa card that supports Visa Fast Funds. In the U.S., you can also use a Mastercard card with Mastercard Send.

It’s hard to know whether your bank or card issuer support those features. The best way to figure it out is probably by adding your card to Coinbase and seeing what Coinbase says.

Coinbase isn’t removing other withdrawal methods. For instance, if you’re looking for a cheaper way to withdraw your funds in Europe, a SEPA bank transfer costs €0.15 per transfer. And Coinbase supports instant SEPA transfers if your bank has enabled that.

The company also lets you link your PayPal account with your Coinbase account. Your funds should hit your PayPal account within a few seconds, and there are no fees on Coinbase’s side.

As you can see, there are many ways to move money from your bank account to your Coinbase account. Some of them are slower than others, some of them are more expensive than others. Crypto-to-crypto transactions are a bit simpler by comparison, as you only need your recipient’s wallet address to send tokens.

Image Credits: Coinbase

Startups – TechCrunch

Coinbase lets you withdraw funds to your debit card

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is adding a new way to withdraw funds from your Coinbase account. If you’ve added a compatible debit card to your account, you can transfer USD, EUR or GBP to your bank account nearly instantly.

There are some drawbacks, and the main one is that you’ll pay a lot of fees. In the U.S., Coinbase deducts 1.5% from the transaction, or a minimum $ 0.55 if it’s a small transaction. In the U.K. and Europe, you pay 2% in fees or a minimum fee of £0.45/€0.52, respectively.

You also need to have a compatible card. Not all debit cards support incoming transfers. You need to have a Visa card that supports Visa Fast Funds. In the U.S., you can also use a Mastercard card with Mastercard Send.

It’s hard to know whether your bank or card issuer support those features. The best way to figure it out is probably by adding your card to Coinbase and seeing what Coinbase says.

Coinbase isn’t removing other withdrawal methods. For instance, if you’re looking for a cheaper way to withdraw your funds in Europe, a SEPA bank transfer costs €0.15 per transfer. And Coinbase supports instant SEPA transfers if your bank has enabled that.

The company also lets you link your PayPal account with your Coinbase account. Your funds should hit your PayPal account within a few seconds, and there are no fees on Coinbase’s side.

As you can see, there are many ways to move money from your bank account to your Coinbase account. Some of them are slower than others, some of them are more expensive than others. Crypto-to-crypto transactions are a bit simpler by comparison, as you only need your recipient’s wallet address to send tokens.

Image Credits: Coinbase

Startups – TechCrunch

Coinbase lets you withdraw funds to your debit card

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is adding a new way to withdraw funds from your Coinbase account. If you’ve added a compatible debit card to your account, you can transfer USD, EUR or GBP to your bank account nearly instantly.

There are some drawbacks, and the main one is that you’ll pay a lot of fees. In the U.S., Coinbase deducts 1.5% from the transaction, or a minimum $ 0.55 if it’s a small transaction. In the U.K. and Europe, you pay 2% in fees or a minimum fee of £0.45/€0.52, respectively.

You also need to have a compatible card. Not all debit cards support incoming transfers. You need to have a Visa card that supports Visa Fast Funds. In the U.S., you can also use a Mastercard card with Mastercard Send.

It’s hard to know whether your bank or card issuer support those features. The best way to figure it out is probably by adding your card to Coinbase and seeing what Coinbase says.

Coinbase isn’t removing other withdrawal methods. For instance, if you’re looking for a cheaper way to withdraw your funds in Europe, a SEPA bank transfer costs €0.15 per transfer. And Coinbase supports instant SEPA transfers if your bank has enabled that.

The company also lets you link your PayPal account with your Coinbase account. Your funds should hit your PayPal account within a few seconds, and there are no fees on Coinbase’s side.

As you can see, there are many ways to move money from your bank account to your Coinbase account. Some of them are slower than others, some of them are more expensive than others. Crypto-to-crypto transactions are a bit simpler by comparison, as you only need your recipient’s wallet address to send tokens.

Image Credits: Coinbase

Startups – TechCrunch

Coinbase lets you withdraw funds to your debit card

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is adding a new way to withdraw funds from your Coinbase account. If you’ve added a compatible debit card to your account, you can transfer USD, EUR or GBP to your bank account nearly instantly.

There are some drawbacks, and the main one is that you’ll pay a lot of fees. In the U.S., Coinbase deducts 1.5% from the transaction, or a minimum $ 0.55 if it’s a small transaction. In the U.K. and Europe, you pay 2% in fees or a minimum fee of £0.45/€0.52, respectively.

You also need to have a compatible card. Not all debit cards support incoming transfers. You need to have a Visa card that supports Visa Fast Funds. In the U.S., you can also use a Mastercard card with Mastercard Send.

It’s hard to know whether your bank or card issuer support those features. The best way to figure it out is probably by adding your card to Coinbase and seeing what Coinbase says.

Coinbase isn’t removing other withdrawal methods. For instance, if you’re looking for a cheaper way to withdraw your funds in Europe, a SEPA bank transfer costs €0.15 per transfer. And Coinbase supports instant SEPA transfers if your bank has enabled that.

The company also lets you link your PayPal account with your Coinbase account. Your funds should hit your PayPal account within a few seconds, and there are no fees on Coinbase’s side.

As you can see, there are many ways to move money from your bank account to your Coinbase account. Some of them are slower than others, some of them are more expensive than others. Crypto-to-crypto transactions are a bit simpler by comparison, as you only need your recipient’s wallet address to send tokens.

Image Credits: Coinbase

Startups – TechCrunch

Coinbase lets you withdraw funds to your debit card

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase is adding a new way to withdraw funds from your Coinbase account. If you’ve added a compatible debit card to your account, you can transfer USD, EUR or GBP to your bank account nearly instantly.

There are some drawbacks, and the main one is that you’ll pay a lot of fees. In the U.S., Coinbase deducts 1.5% from the transaction, or a minimum $ 0.55 if it’s a small transaction. In the U.K. and Europe, you pay 2% in fees or a minimum fee of £0.45/€0.52, respectively.

You also need to have a compatible card. Not all debit cards support incoming transfers. You need to have a Visa card that supports Visa Fast Funds. In the U.S., you can also use a Mastercard card with Mastercard Send.

It’s hard to know whether your bank or card issuer support those features. The best way to figure it out is probably by adding your card to Coinbase and seeing what Coinbase says.

Coinbase isn’t removing other withdrawal methods. For instance, if you’re looking for a cheaper way to withdraw your funds in Europe, a SEPA bank transfer costs €0.15 per transfer. And Coinbase supports instant SEPA transfers if your bank has enabled that.

The company also lets you link your PayPal account with your Coinbase account. Your funds should hit your PayPal account within a few seconds, and there are no fees on Coinbase’s side.

As you can see, there are many ways to move money from your bank account to your Coinbase account. Some of them are slower than others, some of them are more expensive than others. Crypto-to-crypto transactions are a bit simpler by comparison, as you only need your recipient’s wallet address to send tokens.

Image Credits: Coinbase

Startups – TechCrunch

Point wants to provide credit card rewards with debit cards

Point, a new challenger bank in the U.S., is launching publicly today with an invite system. While Point is technically providing a bank account, the company focuses on rewards associated with a debit card.

“I started Point as a solution about everything that is frustrating and complicated about credit cards. The incentives between credit card companies and cardholders are misaligned,” Point co-founder and CEO Patrick Mrozowski told me.

When Mrozowski first got a credit card, he was spending a ton of money to reach a certain level of spending and unlock the sign-up bonus. At the end of the month, he ended up with credit card debt for no valid reason.

“What would American Express look like today?” he says to sum up Point’s vision. It comes down to two important principles — being in charge of your budget so that you don’t end up with debt and unlocking rewards from brands that you actually interact with.

Many challenger banks want to provide a simple banking experience for the underbanked. Point doesn’t have the same positioning. Creating a Point account is more like joining a membership program.

When you sign up, you get a debit card with some level of insurance as it’s a Mastercard World Debit card. You can expect some trip cancellation insurance, rental car insurance, purchase insurance, etc.

As the name of the startup suggests, you earn points with each purchase. You get 5x points on subscriptions, such as Spotify and Netflix, 3x points on food, grocery deliveries and ride sharing, and 1x points on everything else. Points can be redeemed for dollars — each point is worth $ 0.01. In addition to that, Point is going to create a feed of offers with discounts, content, events and more.

Due to its premium positioning, Point isn’t free. You have to pay $ 6.99 per month or $ 60 per year to join Point. Point doesn’t charge any foreign transaction fees.

You can connect your Point account with another bank account using Plaid. It lets you top up your account using ACH transfers. Behind the scenes, Point works with Radius Bank for the banking infrastructure, an FDIC-insured bank.

The company announced earlier this month that it has raised a $ 10.5 million Series A led by Valar Ventures with Y Combinator, Kindred Ventures, Finventure Studio and business angels also participating.

Image Credits: Point

Startups – TechCrunch