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Financial Planning > College Planning > Student Loan Debt

4 Cool Fintech Tools Coming Out of NY Tech Day

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This year’s NY TechDay brought in more than 575 startups and tech influencers from a wide range of markets, including social impact, music and media, health and fitness, education, and fintech.

TechDay, which is marketed as the “U.S.’s largest startup event,” brings together new startups with industry leaders, investors and press.

Among the exhibiting startups were several companies offering up fresh fintech ideas and tools – from student loan repayment tools to document organization to kids’ savings accounts.

(Related: Balance Is Key to Advisor Tech, Client Service: Kitces)

Here are four fintech tools and companies that came out of this year’s NY TechDay.

1. PeopleJoy

PeopleJoy launched about 15 months ago with the goal to work with employers to help pay off employees’ student loans.

Calling itself a “financial wellness benefits provider for the modern workforce,” PeopleJoy works with companies to offer their employees student loan repayment assistance and refinancing, matched savings plans, and financial literacy education. Employees increasingly have to decide between paying off debt, building an emergency fund or saving for retirement.

Once they get rid of debt, according to founder and CEO Emeka Oguh, they start saving for retirement.

Student loan debt is at a record high $1.3 trillion, impacting 7 in 10 graduates and growing at a rate of $2,726 per second, according to PeopleJoy.

Nearly 80% of U.S. workers with student loans would prefer company student loan repayment assistance over a 401(k) retirement plan match, according to PeopleJoy.

Because of this more employers are starting to offer student loan repayment assistance as benefit to attract and retain talent.

“Companies are starting to realize this is an issue,” Oguh told ThinkAdvisor.

PeopleJoy is launching at five companies.


UPMONTH rethinks how the investment community organizes its knowledge.

UPMONTH, which works primarily with institutional investors, endowments and family offices, soft-launched at the beginning of this year and has signed on 11 clients already.

According to Jared Bloom, a partner at UPMONTH, “so much of an investment office’s knowledge” is in documents in servers, folder and emails – “all over the place,” Bloom said.

Bloom said he knows of one endowment that has a dedicated team that focuses specifically on documents getting put in the right place so they can be found later.

Instead, investment teams can drag and drop files into UPMONTH where files are tagged using clues from the content itself. Then, similar to a Google search, they can search for any document.

3. Kidfund

Kidfund is a private, social savings platform that allows parents to open a savings account for their child. Because, as their website says, “putting money in your kid’s account should be as easy as tipping the barista.”

Through Kidfund, parents can also build a larger fund with auto-recurring transfers, direct cash gifting from friends and family, and donate to accounts for kids in need.

Funds are held with Kidfund’s banking partner, USALLIANCE Financial, in convenient, secure, individual savings accounts opened in seconds through the Kidfund app and linked to each child’s profile. These accounts are free and insured up to $250,000, with 3% interest on first $500.

Charitable donations are set in the app and go through Kidfund’s non-profit partner, CFED’s 1:1 Fund, into a growing network of local programs that provide College Savings Accounts for kids in need across America.

4. qplum

Qplum is an online investment advisory firm, offering A.I. and machine-learning based portfolios. 

The firm, which launched in February 2016, was founded by Mansi Singhal and Gaurav Chakravorty as a way to democratize investing. The goal of qplum is to bring investment techniques, trading strategies, and wealth management tools – which were once the privilege of Wall Street – to the main street investor. 

Qplum charges a flat fee that is a percentage of assets under management, rather than paying per trade. The fees vary based on the portfolios, for example, the fee of qplum’s Flagship portfolio is roughly $4.75 per 10,000 per month.

The firm handles retirement planning, IRA accounts, 401k rollover, personal investing accounts, joint investment accounts, and more.

For individual and joint accounts, the investment minimum is $10,000. For traditional, ROTH, and SEP IRAs, the investment minimum is $1,000.

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