- Fresh off securing $300 million in debt funding, neobank Step has rolled out crypto investing and rewards on its platform, the Gen Z-geared fintech announced Tuesday.
- The new offering allows teens, with consent from a legal guardian or parent, to buy and sell Bitcoin. Step said it plans to add stocks and other cryptocurrencies to the platform soon.
- The fintech, which claims to have more than 3 million customer accounts, said it is partnering with digital assets infrastructure and regulatory platform Zero Hash to offer the cryptocurrency transaction and custody services.
“Gen Z is the generation of creators, entrepreneurs and investors. They are redefining norms and taking control of their financial futures earlier in life thanks to products like Step,” said Jim Labe, co-CEO at TriplePoint Capital, which participated in Step’s recent debt funding round. “We are excited to partner with the Step team to continue scaling the business to millions of financially savvy teens and young adults.”
Step users under 18 need a parent or legal guardian to cosign a Step account, which comes with a secured spending card that allows users to build credit.
The fee-free account is offered in partnership with Step’s sponsor bank, Evolve Bank & Trust, which also participated in the neobank’s recent debt round.
To date, the fintech has raised more than $500 million in equity and debt financing from a group of investors that includes Stripe, Coatue, Crosslink Capital and General Catalyst, as well as TriplePoint.
The startup has also garnered investment from celebrity investors such as singer/actor Justin Timberlake, NBA player Steph Curry, social media personality Charli D’Amelio and others.
Step said its new digital asset offering allows customers to accrue rewards in crypto when they use their Step card. The rewards offering is an expansion of its recently launched cash-back rewards platform, the company said.
“In less than two years, we’ve been able to help more than 3 million customers establish a strong financial foundation and begin to think about their long-term goals,” CJ MacDonald, founder and CEO at Step, said in a statement. “We’re thrilled to be able to offer teens and young adults the ability to build credit, budget, spend, save, earn and now invest in their financial futures directly within the Step App.”
Step, like many other fintechs wading into crypto, said it is complementing the new service with a focus on education.
The firm launched a six-lesson financial literacy program called Money 101, designed to help students and parents understand the foundations of modern banking, investing in stocks and cryptocurrencies.
Step said the program is being taught in over 100 high schools across the country.