Woli, the Greek family banking app, and prepaid card for kids and teens, closed a €700K seed round led by the Sofia-based VC, Eleven Ventures, to expand across Europe. The round is joined by regional fintech-star founders, including the CEO of Payhawk, Hristo Borisov, the CEO of Plum, Victor Trokoudes, and the CEO of Relevance Digital Agency, Thanassis Sofianos.
The news comes just a couple of months after the official launch of the app, during which Woli has grown significantly its user base. With the new investment, the family banking app will aim to introduce new product features, double its team, and enter new European markets by the end of 2022.
“We are extremely excited for the upcoming year. We have a challenging roadmap in place, with many features that extend way beyond fintech, and we aim to position Woli as one of the leading kid and teen neobank brands in Europe. Bringing such a great lineup of investors on board is surely a major milestone. We see their involvement as a great vote of confidence not only for the challenge we are tackling but also for the way our team is approaching it. Moreover, we look forward to their insights which can help us unlock more efficient strategies as we move forward and scale, ” Vasilis Zoupas, Woli’s CEO and founder, shares.
Family banking and financial education
Woli is a family neobank and prepaid MasterCard for children 10 to 18 years old that allows parents to make cashless pocket money payments with the aim to teach their children how to become responsible spenders. Besides having regular banking features, the app uses financial education quizzes to help children gain more confidence in managing their finances. In addition, Woli issues colorful prepaid Mastercard cards that are tied to the child’s account.
Founded in 2020 by Vasilis Zoupas and Filippos Antonopoulos, Woli is a subscription-based business that charges a monthly fee for each active child account. This fee covers the use of the card, the parent app, and the child app packed with banking and educational features. “As we grow our customer base, we also plan to include new revenue streams, such as revenue from value-added services offered via the app,” Zoupas shares.
Woli is licensed as an E-money distributor by the Bank of Lithuania and in the first 3 months since its official launch, it grew over 1,000 accounts. Being the first digital wallet and prepaid Mastercard focused solely on the needs of children from 10 to 18 years old, Woli currently serves over 500 families across Greece.
The future is cashless
“While personal finance management for families has been a growing trend, children are participating in ever more cashless transactions, requiring that they be served with tailored financial products, adequate education, and brand identity. We are very happy to welcome Vasilis and his team to Eleven, as Woli is taking on a mission to change how money management and financial education in the family works,” Vassil Terziev, Managing Partner at Eleven Ventures, explains.
There is a clear need for children’s habits and traditions regarding money to change. In Europe, especially, pocket money is still given to children in cash, which leaves them with no proper tool to manage their finances and set goals. At the same time, parents find it difficult to educate their children about money management principles.
A super app for teen banking?
The Woli iOS and Android app and Mastercard are currently offered only in the Greek market, but the company is already looking to expand to big European markets such as Italy and Spain.
Besides being focused on team and market expansion, Woli is also working on the development of new features, such as a financial literacy platform, smart saving goals, money gift cards from relatives, and a marketplace for rewards and partners’ products.
“We envision Woli as a holistic experience for teens around conscious money management. This is why we are designing features that can make the family banking experience streamlined, ultra-secure and at the same time educational, while offering exclusive rewards and purchases via the app,” Zoupas concludes.