Fintech & e-commerce

Exclusive: GoalBased Investors Banks $2.75M Seed To Gamify Financial Planning

Illustration of mother/daugher flying a kite with dollar design

GoalBased Investors aims to provide access to anyone who wants goal-based financial planning and advice, and now has $2.75 million in new seed funding to continue developing its platform.

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The New York-based company, founded in 2019, asks users three questions: How much you have now, how much you want to save and the trade-offs you are willing to make. It then matches users and advisers through a free gamified app experience.

“We are creating a platform where conversations can happen,” said Chip Castille, founder of GoalBased Investors who previously spent time as an investment strategist at BlackRock. “We saw people without financial literacy, and we want to help individual investors build a financial plan and lower the barriers around finding advice.”

True Ventures led the seed round with participation from The Venture Collective.

“This team is on a mission to strip away some of the intimidating jargon from financial planning that makes it daunting for people,” said Phil Black, co-founder of True Ventures, in a written statement. “Bridging communication between the average investing consumer and advisors who can help them is an incredible use of technology. We believe in Chip, his team and their honest mission to help people achieve their life goals.”

GoalBased app

GoalBased’s smartphone app offers a social media-like interface so the experience is something familiar, Castille said. Even before a plan is set in motion, app users can anonymously and confidentially share information with financial advisers until they get comfortable enough to share additional information.

When speaking with an adviser, goals are expressed in points, Castille explained. Each time the user adds more information or works on their financial plan, points are earned. For example, when the user answers an initial question, they earn 100 points. Someone could then “spend” points in a way to reach their goals, such as spending points to retire three years early or create a college fund, he added.

Because GoalBased is still early in its journey, there are no growth metrics Castille could reveal yet. While the app is free for consumers and advisers, the company aims to monetize the investment manager, he said.

In the meantime, the app will launch this summer, and the new funding is being used to continue testing it with the adviser community. The company is also using advertising to encourage users to get on the waitlist, as well as building out its engineering and sales teams.

“We understand the existing distribution channels and want to make them better,” Castille said. “You will be able to talk to your adviser and say, ‘I’m two points to my goal, what can I add to get there?’ Consumers can express their own way to achieve a goal, and the dialogue will have more meaning.”

Inset photo courtesy of GoalBased Investors.
Illustration: Dom Guzman

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