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Mozper Banks $3.55M To Develop Debit Card, App For LatAm Children

Four months after graduating from Y Combinator, Mozper has launched in Mexico and raised a $3.55 million seed round to develop an app and debit card program designed for children and parents in Latin America.

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Mozper, which essentially aims to digitize children’s pocket money, operates out of Mexico City and was founded in December 2019 by Gabriel Roizner, Pablo Klestorny and Yael Israeli. Parents in Brazil and Mexico alone give $10 billion annually in pocket money to their children, Mozper’s CFO Israeli told Crunchbase News.

Inspiration for Mozper came from U.S. fintech startups that help build healthy financial habits for children, such as gohenry, which raised a $40 million financing round last week led by Edison Partners, and Greenlight Financial Technology—which Israeli said her children were using—that secured a $1.2 billion valuation after closing on $215 million in Series C funding led by Canapi Ventures and TTV Capital in September.

Mozper is taking some aspects from those companies and adapting them to fit the different banking structure in Latin America and parents’ needs. It’s also trying to reverse a degree of mistrust in the financial system that is more pronounced in the region, Israeli said.

“There is a cultural barrier to this education and, as a whole, 70 percent of the population in Latin America has not received a formal financial education,” she added. “Speaking about money is traditionally taboo, but COVID-19 removed a lot of those personal insecurities, and now it is easier to speak about money. We need to help parents create and foster these conversations around money, and we are giving them tips and tools to do this with their kids.”

Hetz Ventures led the round and was joined by F-Prime Capital, Foundation Capital and Secocha Ventures, as well as previous investors Dux Capital and John Farrell. This latest round brings Mozper’s total funding to $5.1 million, which includes $1.6 million in pre-seed funding awarded earlier this year and led by Dux, Farrell and Y Combinator.

“We think that the Latin American market is a blue ocean for fintech innovation,” said Pavel Livshiz, partner at Hetz Ventures, in a written statement. “We were extremely impressed by Gabriel, Yael and Pablo’s ability to execute fast and bring the company’s vision of banking Latam’s digital-first youth to an early and impressive traction.”

Mozper kicked off a closed beta program in August with 500 families to test out the platform before launching to the public on Nov. 2. Since then, the number of users is growing 20 percent week over week, Israeli said.

She said she is enjoying seeing the user experience so far. Some of the first observations are that many parents are coming into it slowly—making a small deposit first, then following up within 24 hours with a bigger deposit. Parents also comment that they are happy to have their children off of their credit cards, she added.

“We are now looking to improve the product market fit,” Israeli said. “A big part is educating the market, and what the value is now that the world has transitioned to a more cashless state. This is something new in Latin America, but it is here to stay.”

Illustration: Li-Anne Dias

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