Kids typically get very little in the way of financial literacy education at schools these days; a recent study by Merrill Lynch found that 72 percent of parents wish they had someone to educate their children about investing.
Banzai, a startup that demo’d at Finovate, is attempting to solve this conundrum by specializing in financial education. They provide financial wellness courses online that “mimic real life,” including solving real world dilemmas—like understanding your credit and credit scores to setting financial priorities.
The application can provide branded tutorials that wealth managers could, in turn, share with their clients for use with the client’s children; there are three levels of courses: Banzai Junior for elementary grade students (aged 8 thru 12), Banzai Teen, designed for middle, junior high and high school students (aged 13 to 18) and Banzai Plus, for advanced classes (aged 16 and up). According to the company, more than 30,000 kids in hundreds of schools are using the application (which is free for both); more than 500 banks and credit unions also sponsor schools in their community.
Banzai also sells its online platform and content lessons as a customized option to financial institutions, mostly to banks and credit unions to date. Head of Banzai business development Landon Glenn estimated that a custom engagement with a single financial advisor would likely be as low as $1,000 a year. For larger firms or enterprises this would scale up to around $5,000 to $50,000 annually.