How a 21-year-old CEO is motivating millennials to manage their finances
At just 21, Daniel Schwartz is the CEO of Exeq, an intelligent personal finance company helping millennials better organize their finances.
Mr. Schwartz is a firm believer that the creation of communication yields innovation, and he has taken this philosophy to drive his company towards pushing boundaries on a daily basis. He was nice enough to take the time to answer some of our questions about the company he co-Founded, Exeq.
Being a millennial yourself, how has being CEO of Exeq helped you stay relevant to the younger generation?
The product and the services Exeq offers are completely geared towards bringing high quality financial guidance and financial advice to a segment of the population that has been left out. Millennials have never received the attention they deserve when it comes to financial help.
Does someone need years of experience in banking to be innovative in finance?
Off the bat, I don’t really have much background when it comes to Fintech or banking or anything like that. But I do have experience being a young person managing their own finances and trying to make sense of it all. Look at the top companies in the world, the most innovative and most influential; Google, Facebook, Apple, they were all started by people under the age of 24. While there are benefits to having professional experience in a field before becoming an entrepreneur, like know how and connections, there is definitely something special about being young and with fresh eyes seeing the world for the first time. It’s a different perspective.
What is your motivation when it comes to providing innovative financial services?
Nobody knows what the hell is going on with their finances. It’s that simple. No one knows how much money they should be saving weekly, monthly, yearly. No one knows how they should be spending their money, or when and how to invest. People are pretty clueless about their personal finances.
What motivates our team is educating our age group about their finances so they can go on and accomplish great things, without worrying about their checking and savings account balances. People know more about how to get a date on Tinder or get a car on Uber than to deal with something as vital as their personal finances.
As for feedback, we haven’t launched yet but in our surveys and focus groups everyone is suggesting a massive pain-point in their lack of financial know how. There are certain solutions that help you invest money like betterment, and companies like mint do a terrible job of categorizing your cash-flow. But none of them actually address the most fundamental issue at hand, and that’s that people have no idea what’s going on in a macro sense.
What role does technology play in banking? What is the current trend?
Integration and centralization. The most powerful device to our generation, the iPhone, is a prime example of integration. Ten years ago, when the iPhone released, you no longer needed to carry around multiple devices. Your phone, internet, calculator, E-Mail, and Camera, were all on one product. Banking is heading in the same direction. Right now, you need a one app for budgeting and another for investing. That is going to change very fast, and Exeq is pushing that change.
Can you discuss what sets you apart from your competitors, and what makes Exeq unique?
Every single one of our competitors focus on something very niche — betterment on investment management, digit on small savings, mint on categorized spending, etc. — but how does this advance the overall financial well-being and education of a generation that’s being truly left out? We think the only way people are going to have high quality advice and a high quality financial life is when they are all integrated into one holistic experience.