Koho partnering with Hyr to offer early access to paycheques and government support

FinTech startup Koho is partnering with staffing startup Hyr, which provides in-app staffing solutions to employers, to give Hyr users early access to their paycheque and government payments at no cost to the user.

“We’re glad to be able to provide Hyr users with the buffer they may need… in a time of financial strain.”
– Daniel Eberhard

Through the partnership, Hyr users are able to receive their paycheques directly to their Koho account. After making an initial direct deposit in their Koho account, users will be eligible to access $100 of their pay early and at no cost or interest. Users will have early access to direct deposits that can include government payments like The Canada Emergency Response Benefit as well as employment insurance.

“It’s always been our aim to deliver transparent and intuitive financial products to Canadians,” explains Daniel Eberhard, founder and CEO at Koho. “Now, we’re glad to be able to provide Hyr users with the buffer they may need to make purchases or payments in a time of financial strain, without having to resort to harmful loans or going further into debt.”

Koho offers a full-service chequing account that comes with a reloadable prepaid Visa card and integrated app. The startup is looking to disrupt the Canadian banking system and is backed by Portag3 Ventures, as well as Power Financial Corporation, which has invested in other alternative FinTech services including Wealthsimple, Borrowell, and League.

In response to COVID-19, Koho has streamlined its sign-up process for users seeking benefits from the Canada Revenue Agency. Eberhard told BetaKit “hundreds” of people signed up in the first hour and over 1,000 people on the first day. The company is also looking to get people partial early access to CRA benefits. This feature is expected to be launched in early May.

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In November, Koho raised an additional $25 million in capital for its Series B, just six months after the initial close of the round at $42 million.

Hyr’s staffing platform allows restaurants and retailers to connect with skilled and experienced gig workers that can fill hourly paid shifts on demand. Gig workers looking for extra money can look through postings that include pay rates, location, and include their desired schedule, while restaurants can post listings and view profiles of potential candidates. The company raised a $1.5 million seed round in 2018.

As part of its COVID-19 response, Hyr has expanded and repurposed its platform so that any non-profit or government organization can use Hyr for free to fill vital volunteer shifts. The app now helps connect willing volunteers who sign up on their platform to these positions.

Hyr is also helping connect displaced workers to essential service industries. Companies like Loblaws, Walmart, and Amazon, can now post and fill job opportunities on the platform for free.

“We’re thrilled that two Canadian companies have come together to form this great solution for our users,” echoed Joshua Karam, Co-Founder and CEO of Hyr. “Together we’re working to support Canadians when it matters most and help reduce people’s reliance on payday loans.”

Update (27/05/2020):

Koho is now broadly piloting its early payroll feature to help users that are under financial strain pay their bills. The pilot will grant users free access to $100 of their CERB payment three days before the scheduled payday, and Koho will not charge fees or interest. A Koho spokesperson confirmed this is a broader version of the features launched with Hyr.

Image source Koho.

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Writer, globetrotter, drone pilot & David Attenborough enthusiast