Deserve, the first credit card designed for Generation Z with the goal of granting more Americans access to fair credit products and a path to financial independence, today announced it raised $50 million in debt financing from Keystone National Group. The company, which uses machine learning instead of just relying on FICO to determine credit-worthiness, is addressing a huge market of over more than two-thirds of Americans aged 18-29 without a credit card who don’t qualify for traditional lending based on the FICO system.
“Since launching the Deserve brand in October of 2017 and addressing the needs of young people who are new to credit, we’ve seen a huge response from young adults and college students across the nation,” said Kalpesh Kapadia, CEO and Founder of Deserve. “The strong initial response to our brand and high demand for our products validate the fact that Gen Z and millennials need access to fair credit products that allow them to build credit history and reward them along the way. This new credit facility will help us bring deserving consumers to the credit system who are often overlooked by the traditional approach and allow them to pave their path to financial independence.”
The Deserve Edu card, which is a fair credit product for college students that rewards and reinforces good credit behavior, has been well received by college students and the administrators who look out for their best interests.
“As educators, we are excited to offer students the opportunity to build and manage credit, especially since many are doing so for the first time on their own,” said Amy Griggs Veramay, lead advisor for Undergraduate Student Services at UC Berkeley’s International Office. “Learning how to navigate one’s finances independently is a crucial part of the educational process, and we are pleased to have Deserve as an option for students here on campus.”
Deserve recently announced a $12 million funding round led by Accel, with participation from Aspect Ventures, Pelion Ventures, Mission Holdings, Alumni Venture Group and GDP Venture. The funds were used to launch its new credit cards built specifically for Gen Z and Millennials–Deserve Edu and Deserve Pro–and to expand its audience to include all 40 million-plus college students and young adults in the country.