Québec-based FinTech startup Walo has secured a $1.1 million investment from the Government of Québec, Desjardins, Granicus Group, WatchMojo, and several undisclosed angel investors.
The provincial government’s investment was made through Impulsion PME, a $50 million budget managed by Investissement Québec.
“It’s more pressing than ever to provide solutions that help kids learn good financial habits.”
– Rim Charkani, Walo
Founded in 2018, Walo provides a gamified mobile app that allows parents to automate allowances to give to their children. Using algorithms, Walo aims to help teach its young users financial literacy through games.
Walo said its new capital will make it easier to get its debit cards for kids to market, “helping parents teach their kids about managing their first bank account.”
The FinTech firm plans to “progressively” roll out its new bank accounts for kids and prepaid MasterCard credit cards later this year.
Rim Charkani, CEO and founder of Walo, said it’s “more pressing than ever to provide solutions that help kids learn good financial habits.”
“We need to build a solid foundation to ensure the financial well-being of future generations. That’s our goal,” she added.
Desjardins’ investment in Walo is not the first time it has given the company a boost. WALO was “conceived” during the Cooperathon, Desjardins’ open innovation competition. It then moved into Desjardins’ Startup in Residence, an accelerator for startups.
Walo is among a small group of Canadian tech companies and organizations that have honed in on the need for financial literacy for future generations.
Montréal-based Wingocard secured $2 million CAD last May to launch its financial literacy-focused mobile banking app to users in the United States. The startup was co-created within Diagram Ventures and is also backed by Panache Ventures and angel investors like Dialogue founder Cherif Habib.
In 2020, Intuit Canada and venture capital firm Highline Beta also launched Intuit Prosperity Accelerator, a virtual accelerator aimed to promote the financial health of consumers and small businesses in Canada. The accelerator was designed as a response to the economic crisis individuals and businesses are facing owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Feature image source CNW Group/Walo.