Finance

Exclusive: Watch out, Curve is coming for your cards in 2018

By Oliver Smith 5 December 2017
Shachar Bialick, Founder and CEO of Curve.
Summary

A cold glass of water for people living in bank card hell.

My wallet is an overwhelming place to be, and I bet yours is too.

You picked up one or two bank cards over the years, threw in a credit card for good measure, but then your friends all joined Monzo, so you downloaded the app and they sent you a card too.

All of a sudden you’ve got half a dozen cards and it takes you 5 minutes at the checkout just to figure out how you should pay.

Enter Curve

When Curve launched last year it focused on freelancers and small business owners, giving them the ability to load their personal and company cards onto “the mother of all bank cards”.

Starting early next year CEO and founder Shachar Bialick told The Memo Curve is launching for everyone to use, and 50,000 people have already joined its waiting list.

“The problem we’re trying to solve is our fragmented wad of money, cards investments, accounts,” said Bialick.

“It gets to the position where I don’t know what’s going on with my money I don’t know what the best offering is.”

To start off with Curve will be offering the ability to link all your cards to the Curve card, it’ll cap your international currency fees at 1% on top of the day’s exchange rate regardless of what card you use, and, if you accidentally pay with the wrong card, its Time Travel feature will let you switch cards up to 14 days later.

Plus all the spending data from all your cards is collected in one app, which in the future will connect to your bank accounts directly to pull more data into one place.

Going forward Bialick says Curve’s next step is to start smartly suggesting which card each transaction should go on (I.e say if one credit card has a better interest rate), and eventually Curve will make its money by suggesting “the right product at the right time” and collecting commissions from credit card companies.

Curve-ball

Curve isn’t the only business trying to solve the complexities of modern money.

Bud and Pariti are both focused on connecting to your accounts and helping you to better manage what’s going on.

Meanwhile, all-in-one bank cards have been touted around, but none have taken off yet and few include the kind of data analysis and smart financial features that Curve boasts.

Whether Curve succeeds or not depends really on how complex and unmanageable our financial lives become, and Monzo-using 20-somethings aren’t even the worst served in this space.

“Our target customer is actually 30-plus, because they are more well travelled with more financial ‘debt’ – not in terms of funds, but in terms of accounts and complexity in their financial lives,” says Bialick.

“Just think what it’s going to be like in 10 or 20 years!”

A fearful prospect indeed.