SoFi buys mobile banking start-up Zenbanx for $100m
US-based personal finance firm SoFi (Social Finance) has acquired mobile banking start-up Zenbanx as it looks to stretch out in the world of financial services.
SoFi is paying about $100 million in stock for Zenbanx’s technology, according to Bloomberg and “a person familiar with the agreement”. Zenbanx offers a mobile account in the US and Canada that lets people save, send and spend money in multiple currencies.
Mike Cagney, co-founder, CEO and chairman of SoFi, says with the deal it’s adding deposit, money transfer and credit card products. He adds that “conversational banking” built into messaging apps, is an “area core to our current development”.
In a wishy-washy blog post, Cagney says the “majority” of Zenbanx staff will be joining SoFi, which is another way of saying jobs will go. Zenbanx founder and CEO Arkadi Kuhlmann will join the management team leading the development of new banking services. He’s safe. Good news everyone.
Zenbanx customers will be able to continue using their accounts until the new SoFi personal finance products are launched in a few months, at which point they’ll be transferred onto the SoFi platform.
SoFi was founded in 2011 and provides student loan refinancing, mortgages and personal loans. This latest deal demonstrates its interest in branching into other financial services, with a wealth management tool in beta.