According to the 2010 Census, around 56 million Latinos are living in the United States — the largest ethnic minority in the country. That number is expected to grow to around 133 million over the next 30 years, accounting for around a third of the total U.S. population by 2050. Today, that demographic is woefully underserved when it comes to financial products and education sources. MoneyMio aims to change that.
MoneyMio is the first consumer platform to provide financial content and comparison tools that are bilingual and culturally relevant. They want to offer Latinos the sort of online financial support that many Americans take for granted. Think NerdWallet or WalletHub or LearnVest, or any of the others, sólo en Español.
“Despite having $1.5 trillion in purchasing power, which is larger than the gross domestic product of Mexico, Latinos continue to be an underserved population of the U.S.,” said José Galindo founder and CEO of MoneyMio.
Stop and think about that statistic for a minute. Mexico’s economy is massive, about the same size as Russia or Australia’s. If Latinos in the U.S. were a standalone country, they would be the 12th or 13th largest economy in the world. That's a lot of money and a lot of future potential.
"A lot of Latinos don’t have a credit history or a history of using credit products,” Galindo said. “If you go to Google and look for help on these topics in Spanish, you’re not going to get many relevant results. There’s a huge gap.”
Spanish is the primary language spoken at home by around 38 million people in the U.S., and everything MoneyMio offers is written in both English and Spanish.
“The mission of MoneyMio is to provide Spanish and English speaking Latino/as with the tailored content and tools our community needs to become financially literate; from how to open a bank account, to comparison tools on the best credit card for you, we want to help consumers reach their financial goals.”
In addition to tools that help make the process of choosing a credit card or finding a loan easier, MoneyMio creates content written directly to a Latino audience. If you want to know the '3 best ways to send money to Latin America,' they've got you covered.
Galindo, who was born and raised in Bogota, Colombia, has seen the benefits of financial literacy himself. After studying economics and finance at UCLA, he went on to work at Merryl Lynch, where he found his colleagues' finances to be in a different league from his own.
As he moved up in his career, Galindo began helping his Latino friends with their finances.
“These were smart people, they had a college education, but they were making small financial mistakes,” Galindo said. “I realized that the Latino market was enormous and completely underserved. It seemed like an opportunity to combine my financial experience, my technology experience and my background to create something with more purpose.”
So, he took a risk, launching MoneyMio last week in New York. The company is focusing at the moment on delivering relevant content and resources to Latinos in the United States and may seek a seed round of funding soon.
“I’m taking a big risk with my career, but I really want to create something that has a meaningful impact on the community.”