Green Dot CEO Steve Streit: Consumers Demand ‘Great’ Mobile Experience (Sept. 29, 2015)
Green Dot Corp. sees continued strong demand for the mobile features of its iconic prepaid card and its GoBank checking account. And though the company hasn’t embraced Apple Pay or Android Pay, adding mobile payments access is on the company’s horizon, Steve Streit, Green Dot’s CEO, told attendees at PayThink in Las Vegas today. “If you don’t give consumers under 45 years old a great mobile experience, you’ll lose them soon,” he said. Providing rich features for mobile account access, including remote deposit capture, has been a strong driver of consumer adoption and retention for Green Dot’s products, Streit explained. Mobile payments support is the next thing consumers will come to expect from financial services providers, he predicted. “All banks and processors should be integrating with Apple Pay [and other m-payment services]. While today it may not be a big deal to pay with your phone [at the POS], it’s something that consumers will want.”
The biggest surprise for Streit recently has been the changing competitive landscape in the prepaid card industry, he said. “American Express is now our biggest competitor, and if you’d asked me 10 years ago, I would never have guessed that,” he observed. Asked whether Green Dot may follow its rival in offering consumers rewards in the form of 1 percent cash back, Streit was noncommittal. “We’ll see if that gets traction,” he noted.
Streit said he stands behind his decision to throw support behind the CFPB’s proposed prepaid card regulations. “I’m no expert [on regulations], but as the proposed regs relate to Green Dot, we’re active in our support,” he said.
Diversifying Green Dot’s products and services continue to be a priority for Streit, who noted the company’s 2014 acquisition of tax refund processor Santa Barbara Tax Products Group—which provides back-end support for major tax prep services including Jackson Hewitt—is helping to drive overall business. “[The tax refund processor deal] gave us access to so many millions of low-income consumers at the time they’re receiving their tax refunds. For us, it’s a great synergy and it provides us with some good diversification, which we continue to pursue.”