Finance-for-kids startup PlayMoolah partners with OCBC Bank, gains access to 200,000 Mighty Savers
October 1, 2012 by Terence LEE
Singapore startup PlayMoolah announced today that it has secured a partnership with OCBC Bank, one of Singapore’s largest financial institutions. The partnership will give the bank’s Mighty Savers an option to sign up for PlayMoolah’s online education game, which teaches personal finance to kids.
The Mighty Savers initiative is a kids’ savings program launched by the consumer and business bank 5 years ago. Aimed at children under 15 years old, the program now has 200,000 accounts, up from 100,000 two years ago.
The tie-up would certainly benefit PlayMoolah in terms of customer acquisition and marketing buzz. A licensing agreement is also involved, giving the startup a source of revenue.
From today, Mighty Savers can access PlayMoolah after they cross certain savings thresholds. Saving SGD 50 (USD40) lets kids and parents log in to PlayMoolah Lite, which has a limited feature set. Accumulating SGD 1,000 (USD812) would give them access to the full version for 6 months.
“We decided to work with PlayMoolah, as there is a distinct meeting of minds between our Mighty Savers programme and their online platform. Both use similar methodologies to encourage good financial behaviour,” said Ng Li Lian, head of Mass Segment, OCBC Bank.
Customers will be exposed to PlayMoolah via a through-the-line marketing strategy. PlayMoolah’s characters can be seen at all OCBC branches in Singapore, via video walls, display cases and kids corners. In-branch activities for kids are being considered. Existing savers will also be notified through in-mail bank statement inserts and other online marketing channels, like the Young Parents magazine.
One key metric for this partnership’s success, at least for the startup, is the conversion rate from trial customers that sign up through OCBC Bank to paid subscribers. PlayMoolah offers 3 pricing tiers for the public, valid for 1 month, 6 months, or 1 year.
This is PlayMoolah’s first partnership with a bank. With any luck, the startup can secure more tie-ups with financial institutions, subject to how complementary PlayMoolah is to their goals compared with competing financial literacy programs.
While its presence in Singapore gives it natural affinity with local institutions, PlayMoolah’s goldmine remains the United States. That is why it recently launched its online gamified platform in the country at Finovate Fall 2012 in New York City.
Audrey Tan, PlayMoolah’s co-founder, started the company with Min Xuan Lee to inspire kids to develop a healthy perspective towards money.
“We want them to be empowered by seeing it as a way to serve their dreams, personal growth and happiness, as well as to create value for society, rather than viewing money as an end in itself,” she said.
PlayMoolah offers parents tools to teach their kids about money. Its approach involves getting children to learn through play and real-world decision-making. It utilizes a balanced curriculum that teaches kids to earn, spend, save, invest, and give.View profile: PlayMoolah More articles: PlayMoolah
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About The Author
Terence LEE - Editor
Terence writes mainly about technology trends and startups in Asia. He believes in crafting smart content: Not just a regurgitation of text, but well thought-out pieces that serve the reader using a combination of data, design, narratives, analysis, and visual impact. His articles have been published on Venturebeat, Yahoo!, Straits Times, Today, and The Online Citizen. He also co-founded NewNation.sg, a satirical news site covering Singapore affairs. Engage him on LinkedIn and Twitter.Read other posts by Terence LEE