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Rellevate Enters Early Access to Salary Market with Comprehensive Digital Banking Program

A new fintech company has been launched to provide services to hourly paid workers, who make up nearly 60% of U.S. employees but tend to be underserved by banks. Relévé works with employers to enable them to provide their workers with access to the money they have already earned without forcing them to wait for their regular paycheck or direct deposit. It is similar to services provided by several other companies such as PayActiv, ZayZoon and Plugged. Known as Early Access Payroll Companies, they offer an alternative to payday lenders, a $ 90 billion industry, or check tellers, a $ 11 billion industry. Payday lenders can charge an APR of 150% to 400% (annual percentage rate that includes interest and fees), he added.

Stewart A. Stockdale, co-founder of Rellevate and its chairman and CEO, said it sets itself apart from other early access companies by the comprehensive services it offers. It provides an account that pays interest, a Visa debit card, electronic bill payment and a send money feature which now works nationally but will offer international money transfers at attractive rates later in. the year. It also offers free cash access with customers ‘Visa debit card through Cardtronics’ Allpoint ATM network. It will add expedited bill payment in the fourth quarter to help customers facing a utility shutdown if they don’t pay a bill immediately.

“We’ve been building this for 18 months,” Stockdale said. “It requires quite a complex integration. »Users can access it via a computer or smartphone.

Stockdale has extensive experience in managerial positions in financial services companies. Most recently, he was CEO of The JG Wentworth Company. a diversified consumer financial services company specializing in mortgages, structured settlements, payment systems and personal loan options. Previously, he was President of Western Union and led its money transfer and consumer payment business in five regions around the world.

“I have worked in and around Central America for a while and thought there was a huge opportunity to change the paradigm and offer the right services at a really fair price”, a- he declared.

Companies serving the lower end of the market charged their customers a lot, he added. A Rellevate account will cost its owner $ 9.95 per month for up to four salary advances. To offer payroll advances, he must have access to the employer’s records of time worked and a person’s rate of pay.

“When people need money, since I know you’ve worked those hours and will be paid in two weeks, I’ll give you 50% today. Every day, I tell you how many hours you have accumulated and I make 50% available. If you want it in your checking account, fine. Or if you are at a grocery store checkout and receive a notice from NSF, we can transfer the money to you immediately.

The company maintains a warehouse line at Sutton Bank, an Ohio-based community bank that invests in payments as a commodity.

“They are enterprising and innovative and they know how to build these programs,” Stockdale said. “They understand our vision and the moving parts and were ready to take on the complexity of all of that integrations, cash flow and compliance,” he added.

“When an employee takes $ 50, it goes out of the warehouse on the consumer’s account. Then, at the time of payroll, the payment goes to the Rellevate account and we take it back. We charge no interest and no fees. The risk ends up being if the company goes bankrupt and cannot pay its employees; we bear that risk.

The registration system for its Pay Any-Day service runs on Technisys, a Latin American company that is making inroads into North America with its banking technology.

“They’ve been great, a phenomenal partner,” Stockdale said. “They understand what we’re trying to build. Rellevate will use Payveris for the payment of invoices.

Employers see prepayment providers as a tool to help employees who may find themselves running out of unexpected bills and sometimes borrowing directly from their employer.

Stockdale spoke to a fast food restaurant company that has 125% sales and estimates it costs $ 2,000 to attract an employee.

“They saw it as helping to attract employees and improve retention, a very good advantage. He had just spoken to staff at two hotels in downtown Manhattan. They pay $ 10-25 a month for their bank accounts and $ 35 when they bounce a check. Rellevate delivers cash immediately when they need it.

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