Discover Bank has launched a new mission-driven investment fund, the Discover Financial Health Improvement Fund, to support startups and early stage technology companies who are developing solutions to improve the financial health of low- and moderate-income people, communities, and small businesses. Discover Bank has made an initial capital commitment of $36 million.
“We continually explore innovative ways to support our communities in which we operate and creating the Discover Financial Health Improvement Fund is a unique way of doing that,” said Matthew Parks, vice president of Discover Bank. “As technology continues to evolve, we want to fund entrepreneurs who have identified creative ways to benefit those of modest means. It is our expectation that these technologies can both be profitable and beneficial to the community.”
The Financial Health Network, the leading voice on financial health, will partner with the investment fund on evaluating startups for their potential impact on improving financial health. “With nearly 20 years of expertise identifying and supporting fintech innovators that are moving the needle on financial health, we are well positioned to support Discover’s new fund and its mission,” said Adeeb Mahmud, Chief Program Officer, Financial Health Network.
ResilienceVC, a seed-stage domestically focused venture firm investing in embedded fintech startups based in Washington DC, will be managing Discover’s earlier-stage investments. Vikas Raj, Co-founder and Managing Partner at ResilienceVC says, “Tahira and I started ResilienceVC to support the next generation of fintech startups in the US who are driving financial resilience for all Americans. We are thrilled to partner with Discover to augment our funding and support for these companies.”
Chartline Capital, a broad-based B2B venture investor based in Delaware, will be managing Discover’s later-stage investments. Ben duPont, Co-founder and Managing Director at Chartline Capital Partners says, “throughout time, new technologies have made people’s lives better. Chartline is honored to partner with Discover to invest in companies leveraging new financial technologies to improve the lives of low- and moderate-income people, communities, and small businesses.”
Given the large number of consumers and small businesses that are unserved and underserved with affordable and relevant financial products, Discover believes there is an excellent opportunity to develop successful business models while also directly improving the financial lives of low- and middle-income people, particularly in the Mid-Atlantic region.
About the Fund
The Financial Health Improvement Fund is an investment framework to drive capital investments to fintech startups that are developing solutions that will improve the financial health of low- and moderate-income people, communities, and small businesses.
Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) is a digital banking and payment services company with one of the most recognized brands in U.S. financial services. Since its inception in 1986, the company has become one of the largest card issuers in the United States. The company issues the Discover® card, America's cash rewards pioneer, and offers private student loans, personal loans, home loans, checking and savings accounts and certificates of deposit through its banking business. It operates the Discover Global Network® comprised of Discover Network, with millions of merchants and cash access locations; PULSE®, one of the nation's leading ATM/debit networks; and Diners Club International®, a global payments network with acceptance around the world. For more information, visit www.discover.com/company.
ResilienceVC is a venture firm investing in embedded fintech startups that build resilience for users and deliver returns for investors. The firm invests in seed-stage startups where fintech integrated into core services and channels plays a key role in helping consumers and small businesses thrive. Founded by Vikas Raj and Tahira Dosani, the ResilienceVC team has a decade of experience in seed stage fintech investing and has supported over 75 innovative and impactful fintech startups. We use our extensive knowledge of the sector and of early stage investing to identify and support the next generation of resilient fintech entrepreneurs. More on ResilienceVC can be found here: https://www.resilience.vc/
About Chartline Capital
Chartline Capital Partners is a leading venture capital firm that invests in high-growth B2B technology companies serving core industries. The firm aims to invest after companies have started scaling their go-to-market and help exceptional founders and management teams accelerate growth. Chartline believes that entrepreneurship and venture capital can be leveraged to improve the world around us. Founded in 2012 by Ben duPont and Phil Stern, the firm is based in Wilmington, Delaware. More on Chartline’s investment criteria, team, and current portfolio can be found here: https://www.chartline.com/.
About Financial Health Network
The Financial Health Network is the leading authority on financial health. We are a trusted resource for business leaders, policymakers and innovators united in a mission to improve the financial health of their customers, employees, and communities. Through research, advisory services, measurement tools, and opportunities for cross-sector collaboration, we advance awareness, understanding, and proven best practices in support of improved financial health for all. For more on the Financial Health Network, go to www.finhealthnetwork.org and follow us on Twitter at @FinHealthNet.