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Founded: September 2010 as MyFinance, LLC d/b/a Me&MyMoney
Number of Employees: 4 plus 9 contractors
Funding to Date: Provided by Founders
Headquarters: Minneapolis, MN
Description of the Product
Me&MyMoney is an innovative program which allows members to quickly and easily create their own personal money projections, test and incorporate different strategies into those projections, gain focused insight, understand and evaluate actual money activities, build their financial skills, and utilize the power of community to create better money outcomes.
What We Are Trying To Do
Over time, Me&MyMoney enables its members to not only create their own Money plans, but have the confidence, skills and support to make them happen.
The goal of the company and our members is aligned on a common purpose:
Live the life you want and have money left over.
Overview of Technology
The program itself represents a transformational approach to personal financial management. Yet, many of the components are used by the most innovative and successful businesses in the world today. These include, and are often referred to in terms such as, Financial Modeling, Shareholder Value Analysis, Free Cash Flow, Business Intelligence, Performance Management, Crowd Sourcing, Collaboration, Strategic Planning, etc. The only way this approach could be delivered to an individual is through the power of today’s technology. Although we use diverse data sources, proprietary algorithms, micro-site technology and other emerging IT services, all of the complexity is hidden behind an easy-to-use web-based application focused on an engaging customer experience.
Who cares about this and why?
Tens of millions of American households are in trouble. Given the recession, this is not news to most people. However, we did a different analysis of the problem. We looked not just at today, but also into the future.
We took recent information about the financial activities and well-being of a majority of American households and determined that 6 of 10 of those households are on a current course to out-live their money. This has tremendous implications for not only the individuals, but for our country as a whole.
Although, as a country, we could try to solve this issue from the top down, we do not believe any such effort has or will be successful. Thus, the only way this would be addressed is if each person or household started to move down a more powerful path. It is the power of the individual American to change their personal projection that creates a more valuable outcome for all of us.
We created a program that will allow the individual household to succeed with their money.
Our Target Market
We have identified the 40 million households with income between $40k and $120k per year, and that make up the working backbone of America, as our target market. In addition, it is clear to us that this portion of the population is at the greatest risk from a financial future standpoint.
Most of our target households do not have substantial assets and thus, do not fit the customer outcome “service” models of most financial institutions. They fit into the product driven sales and marketing model of most institutions.
They also do not fit the business models of the asset management portion of the financial planning community.
Fee based financial planning organizations provide a somewhat comparable product, but the cost and ongoing maintenance is often too costly for out target market.
Although there are thousands of valuable and innovative financial websites and tools currently being offered, for years and years they have all followed the same path; get people to become better at budgeting and bookkeeping. Since millions are in still in trouble, it is clear that that approach is not working. We think the world has voted and “Most people do not want to be a bookkeeper.”
Our approach focuses on building the skills of visioning, prioritizing, planning and executing a household money plan. We believe our approach helps an individual become the CEO of his or her own money life, not the head bookkeeper.
Thus, the approach we are presenting has no direct competitors within our target market. However, there are well known businesses included in each of the groups competing for our Target Market’s loyalty. These include most retail financial services companies (banks, insurance, broker dealers), Ameriprise, independent retail asset management businesses, Mint, Quicken and LearnVest.
Definition of financial success and High Level Business Model
For our members it is “Live the life you want and have money left over".
For our business, by focusing on enabling our members to “Live the life they want and have money left over” we expect to engage a couple hundred thousand early adopters as our members. We have targeted a one-year revenue run-rate objective of roughly $120 per member. Although we believe members would quickly understand that the outcomes they gain from our capabilities would be worth well any fees we might charge, we are evaluating a number of innovative ways of realizing that revenue.
Once the base platform is in place, we expect sustainable operating margins on existing members in excess of 50%.
As our members become engaged and realize successes, we expect our member participation to dramatically increase.
The Founding Story
At the end of 2005, after a 30 year career in financial services, Mike Kozlak retired as President of the Residential Capital Group of ResCap, the housing finance subsidiary of GMAC. He immediately volunteered to assist in the housing recovery in New Orleans as a result of Hurricane Katrina. Although working on behalf of the Financial Services Roundtable (FSR), his stated objective was “to align the business interests of FSR member companies behind the local efforts to create great future outcomes for the citizens of the region.” Over the next four years, Mr. Kozlak continued to contribute his time and energy in an attempt to create more powerful solutions for the housing crisis in New Orleans and then the broader crisis that the country faced.
During this time, it became increasing clear that their neither the financial services industry nor personal financial websites and tools were effective in enabling positive financial outcomes for the working backbone of America. He believed the failure was a result of both unaligned motivation and an erroneous approach. Over the next few years, he further researched the issues, explored countless alternatives, engaged with industry leaders and, finally, identified the critical barriers of success for these customers. He then created a design of a business that would address those barriers.
In late 2010, the new business was formed and a small team of dedicated individuals began to bring Me&MyMoney to life. In May 2011, MeandMyMoney.org was launched on the web. The initial website was used to create and post content which would support the future launch of the business. It introduced some perspectives on underlying issues, current conditions, barriers to success, and hinted at the release of a new approach. It also exposed Mr. Kozlak’s passion for enabling the working backbone to gain control over their financial future.
The business, and its innovative application, was introduced to the world through MeandMyMoney.com at Demo on September 13, 2011.
Me&MyMoney Debuts at DEMO Fall 2011 Conference