News, Personal Budgeting, Technology,

BBVA Acquires Startup Simple, and So Should You

On Feb. 20th, 2014, the banking company BBVA purchased the banking startup Simple for about $117 million. Now for those of you who don’t really know what exactly Simple does, you may be asking 1) What the hell is Simple? And 2) Why should i even care? Well folks after looking a little more into the startup, the company itself has a pretty amazing concept for personal finance.

So What Does Simple Do?

Simple acts as a middleman of sorts between users and banking companies. One of the Co Founders Josh Reich saw Simple as a banking service that could serve as sort of a replacement to banks themselves. While the banks handle the money, Simple is meant to handle the people and the technology required to provide modern day personal finance. In fact Simple prides itself on not charging fees to its users, it only focuses on providing users with an app that makes spending and saving easy. Lets take a look at what it actually does.

The Safe-to-Spend Feature (AKA the reason you should get this app).

When you view your balance on your bank’s website or mobile app, you can see the current balance and your transactions, but beyond that, your bank balance doesn’t show future deductions that will affect your account. Deductions such as rent, groceries or extra purchases have to be mentally calculated and remembered so that you don’t risk an overdraft.

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With Simple, the Safe to Spend feature will do the calculations for you so you know how much money will needs to be deducted. It will also create a budget by analyzing your purchases and payments and then organizing them into a nice little spreadsheet so you can see where your money is going and adjust accordingly.

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Based on your budget as well as your goals you may set on Simple, (Like saving up enough money to go to Vegas or even to purchase a car) the app will calculate how much money you can spend each day without jeopardizing your financial goals. Simple will also automatically put aside funds for whatever payments or goals you may have coming up, making it easier to get a better picture of your finances.

The Other Super Legit Features

The other thing that stood out to me about Simple’s product was that on their app, you can message their customer service directly through a chat room, so you can get personalized help much quicker than calling or going to you bank branch. I really like this idea, why should you have to wait to get financial help? Kudos Simple, nicely done.

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Like other personal finance apps, Simple also always for photo check deposit and transfering of money from one account to another. They also give you a Simple Visa Card that will instantly post all transactions to your account and send you a notification to your phone as well. If you lose your card, don’t fear citizens, Simple lets you cancel the card on the app itself (No more waiting on hold to talk to your banks customer support)

What Can We Expect Next

Despite being bought out by BBVA, Simple will continue to operate independently under its own brand.  As Co-Founder John Reich explained, the acquisition of his company by BBVA will allow them to expand while offering the same service.

To achieve this, we will function as a separate business within the BBVA structure, operating in parallel with BBVA’s existing US banking operations. The biggest change is that now we will have the support of a global banking group with $820 billion in assets that shares our passion for innovative technology and customer experience.

It is expected that all the customer accounts for Simple will be transfered over to BBVA, which will allow Simple to have even more control in banking experience as a whole. It seems that Simple is poised to succeed in the future. The demand for Simple has grown to the point where there is a waiting list of over 200,000 to get the app (I’m actually on the waiting list too)! Definitely take a look at this app guys, it looks way too cool to pass up.

 

 

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As a graduate of UCSD with a degree in International Studies, Kevin is interested in the US stock market and how it affects not only the American public, but the international financial community as a whole.

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