New in fintech: Finch app helps millennials balance social life and finances

As the fintech market in Australia heats up, Melbourne-based startup Finch has launched a new app aimed at helping millennials to balance their finances with busy social lives.

The app combines the ability to make social payments - like splitting a dinner bill with friends - with financial insights, to help young Aussies get a better grasp on their finances. Through the app, users can pay friends or request payments from them, track shared expenses in different tabs and split bills.

But the app is not all about the best way to make sure everyone pays their fair share on cocktail night. Users can also receive insights on how to improve their spending and saving habits, revealing how much they spend, where they spend it and when.

“Socialising is a big part of a millennial’s life, whether it’s going out, dining out or travelling with friends,” said Toby Gardner, Finch CEO. 

“Not only do we want to make those financial interactions between friends fun and easy, we want to help build their financial confidence by helping them understand their current social spending habits.”

There are around 400 fintech companies in Australia, 54% of which cater to consumers, and Fintech Australia recently revealed that between 2015 and now, the Australian market has risen to fifth in the world for fintech adoption. 

Even social media giant Facebook is gearing up to throw its hat in the social payments ring, recently taking out a patent that will allow it to launch it’s peer-to-peer payment platform in Australia.

Of Australia’s digitally active population, 37% are now active fintech users, while the number of Aussies who prefer to use traditional financial services dropped to 10%, down from 23% in 2015.

“Fintech is no longer just an industry with future potential – it is now an industry which is delivering great on-the-ground outcomes and becoming the first choice for financial services for many Australians,” said FinTech Australia president, Simon Cant.

Earlier this year, research from peer-to-peer lender SocietyOne also revealed that millennials are the worst offenders when it comes to credit card mismanagement - making the Finch app, which focuses on behavioural finance to better help users identify trends in their own money habits - a timely addition to the fintech market.

“We’re meeting millennials at their current priorities in life, with the goal to continue supporting them as their priorities inevitably change over time,” said Gardner. 

“We believe there’s enormous opportunity to better serve customers by focussing on experiences and behaviours rather than financial products.”

You can get Finch for free on iOS or Android.