A Cool Example of Mobile-Driven Financial Services for the Youngsters, Osper Raises 10 Mn Pounds

MEDICIFounder and Chief Strategy & Innovation Officer

On 30th June 2014, a new banking service known as Osper, was announced for young individuals in the UK. Osper is a company that offers parents the help that they required in order to equip their children with money management skills.

"When I heard about Osper and its ideals and what it wanted to provide for families, I just felt safe,” commented TV personality and mother of 3, Davina McCall, in a press release. “It's teaching me how to relax a bit when it comes to finances with my children," she added.

  • Osper seeks to be a mobile-only, branchless, simple and secure banking service and Prepaid Debit Card for 8-18 year olds.
  • The company says that it provides young people with financial freedom as well as encourages them to take responsibility for their money.
  • The service is composed of a MasterCard® Prepaid Debit Card accompanied by a simple mobile app.
  • This comes with separate logins for both young people as well as their parents, says the release.
  • Osper is designed to give parents the confidence to transfer more responsibility to their children with regard to making decisions on money matters.
  • Rather than parents handing over cash or lending their own credit card for online purchases, young people can utilize their Osper Card in stores, for cash withdrawals at ATMs as well as for online purchases and service subscriptions such as Amazon and iTunes.
  • All transactions are tracked within the app and asOsper Cards are prepaid – kids can only spend the money they have available to them.
  • Osper states that it is not a credit card.
  • It is focused on redesigning banking from the ground up for young people through devices and experiences they understand.
  • Osper's "dual-app" for young people and parents, with real-time monitoring of spending and loading, will create more transparent and open conversation about money.
  • Simple features such as "Osper Allowance" with SMS alerts, will kick-start their habit of weekly or monthly budgeting from a young age.

Some features:

Easy safe setup: The ability for parents to get up and running in under two minutes, for free, from mobile or web. Fraud and identify checks in real-time removing the need to visit a branch.

One app, two logins: A secure banking app which both young people and parents can download and log in to from their own mobile phones to manage the same Osper Card.

Instant Loading: The ability for parents to instantly load money from their Debit Card onto their child's Osper Card account instead of giving cash in emergencies.

Monitoring spend: Instant balance checking and monitoring of transactions, including Osper Alerts - SMS alerts for transactions declined due to insufficient funds.

Card Lock: Simple card lock function both young people and parents can use directly from the app if the card is lost or stolen to block all purchases.

No overdraft: No overdraft facility. Hence, users can only spend the money they have - it's not a credit card.

"While parents currently spend an average of £10,000 a year on their children, young people are only accountable for around 5% of that(about £10 a week) - this leads to far too many young adults leaving home without experience of budgeting and unprepared to manage the financial responsibilities ahead of them. There is also a heavy reliance on parents lending their credit card for purchases with one in five UK children using their parents' cards in secret,” commented Founder of Osper, Alick Varma, in the same release. "We need to reinvent banking for young people and help parents pass on more responsibility at an earlier age. This will ensure young people enter into adulthood with the tools and self-confidence needed to manage their first pay cheque or university loan. Osper gives young people the freedom and control needed to 'learn by doing' within the framework of a safe and secure family environment."

Amit Goel

MEDICIFounder and Chief Strategy & Innovation Officer

Amit Goel is the Founder & Chief Strategy & Innovation Officer for MEDICI. Amit’s vision is to build a strong FinTech market network that involves financial institutions, banks, startups, investors, analysts & other key stakeholders across the ecosystem – helping each one of them in a meaningful way by removing the asymmetry of information and providing a platform to engage & transact.

Amit is passionate about bringing actionable FinTech-focused insights, innovative products & services for the FinTech ecosystem. Some of his work involves startup scores, bank scores/assessments, predictive viewpoints & other innovations that have helped MEDICI’s customers and the ecosystem. He has been named amongst the Top 100 FinTech thought leaders/influencers in the world & Top 10 in Asia multiple times by reputed agencies, consulting firms as well as financial institutions. Amit has built MEDICI (formerly LTP) as a new-age, tech-enabled advisory/research firm, which is now considered the #1 global research & innovation platform for FinTech in the world.

Amit has been writing pioneering viewpoints on financial technology space that have been ahead of the curve since 2010. His data-driven predictions have helped the customers as well as the ecosystem. His past work experience includes a strong background in strategy & market analysis and advisory to clients (from big business houses to Fortune 500 firms) in payments, commerce, financial services & IT/technology. In the past, Amit had also founded a successful consulting & research practice called GrowthPraxis and has worked at Boston Analytics, Frost & Sullivan, and Daimler Chrysler in strategy & research.