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Governments across the world are supporting the use of fintech for increasing financial inclusion and elevating efficiency via real-time payments and open applications programming interfaces and blockchains. Leveraging the fintech industry, the government can create a digital economy that further leads to market growth.
Acorns is the first company in the fintech industry to offer micro-investments and robo advice to the world. Read further to access detailed information about Acorns- from founders and startup story to the business model, investors, growth, and funding.
Acorns - Company Highlights
- Company Name-Acorns
- Headquarters-Irvine, California, United States
- Primary Industry-Fintech
- Founders-Jason Martell, Jeff Cruttenden, Walter Cruttenden, and Mark Dru
- Founded In-2012
- Revenue-$180.4M (2022)
Acorns - About
- Founded in 2012, Acorns is a finance company that provides micro-investing services through its web and mobile applications. It basically allows its customers to round up purchases and invest the change automatically into a diversified portfolio. Moreover, the company also offers multiple solutions, including banking, personal investing, investing for kids, and investing for retirement.
- The company is thriving under the leadership of Noah Kerner (CEO) and David Hijirida (President).
Acorns - Industry
- Acorns is a fintech company that has revolutionized the concept of micro-investing worldwide. Fintech is the term used to refer to financial technology that enhances or automates financial services and processes.
- Talking about the global fintech market, it has attained a value of over $194.1 billion in 2022 and is expected to reach more than $492.81 billion by 2028, with a CAGR of 16.8% during 2023-2028.
- It is because of the increased penetration of the internet, use of smartphones, and adoption of cashless currency and the Covid-19 pandemic that accelerated the adoption of digital technology in the financial sector.
- Visa, Mastercard, PayPal, Tencent, Stripe, and Ant Financial are a few leading companies in the fintech industry.
Acorns - Founders and Team
Acorns was founded by four seasonal entrepreneurs named Jason Martell, Jeff Cruttenden, Walter Cruttenden, and Mark Dru. The team was later on joined by Noah Kerner.
- Jeffrey James Cruttenden is the founder of Acorns and graduated from Lewis & Clark College with a degree in Bachelor of Arts, in Mathematics. In addition to this, he is currently a Partner at Cruttenden Partners and Co-founder at Say.
- Working as a Founder at Acorns, Walter Wemple Cruttenden III has held the role of CEO at Blast. Presently, he is also working as a President at Cruttenden Partners and Executive Director at Binary Research Institute.
- Jason Martell is an entrepreneur known for co-founding many companies. His expertise lies in the field of UX design, UI, mobile, creative, and interactive technologies. Jason Martell currently serves as a product designer for Meta. He also served as the co-founder of Blast and Acorns.
- Mark Dru is another name in the founder's list of Acorns. Apart from Acorns, he is also the co-founder of Blast and has worked as Chief Revenue Officer at Triller in past. At Acorns, along with being a co-founder, he has served as a CFO for time period of 3 years (2012-2015).
- Noah Kerner is another powerful name in the team of Acorns. He serves the Acorns as CEO and Chairman from 2014 to the present. Apart from this, he has also served as the co-founder and CEO of Noise. He is also present as a co-founder of SAY.
- When it comes to the company size, presently, it employs around 500 employees.
Acorns - Startup Story
The main idea behind founding Acorns was to promote incremental and passive investing. In 2014, it launched an app for both Android and iOS devices, and portfolio options were designed in partnership with Harry Markowitz – a Nobel-winning advisor.
Moreover, the platform has expanded by including checking account services and retirement IRA products. In 2018, a behavioral economist- Shlomo Benartzi was appointed Chair of the Behavioral Economics Committee to work on the initiative of Money Lab conducting field experiments to know stats about consumer spending.
Acorns - Mission and Vision
The company’s main aim is to look after the financial best interests of the up-and-coming, beginning with the empowering, proud step of micro-investing. It is working on increasing the accessibility to several investment options that were previously available for purchase only with a large sum of money.
Acorns - Business Model
The micro-investing platform earns money through membership fees. It basically allows members to save small sums of money and invest them to further save for retirement. The company also offers banking services to members at lower fees.
The services are divided into three primary categories. The first category allows members to invest their spare change in ETFs (exchange-traded funds). The second category enables members to create and fund an IRA through the platform and the third category provides a debit card through companies like Visa Inc.
The subscription is offered by the company for $1, $3, and $5 per month for packages including different services.
Acorns - Products and Services
Acorns is known to offer four main products and these are – investment management, investment portfolios, stock trading and stock portfolios. In addition, it has three main services- Acorns Core, Acorns Spend, and Acorns Later.
Acorns - Challenges Faced
Acorns failed to maintain proper customer records and thus, was censured and fined by Financial Industry Regulatory Authority in 2017. Furthermore, in 2021, the company planned to go public after merging with Pinoeer Merger Corporation – a blank-check company.
However, this plan was canceled in 2022 due to market conditions. Moreover, no tax strategy and high fees on small balances are two major aspects where it falls short.
Acorns - Funding and Investors
Over 10 funding rounds, Acorns has been able to raise a total of $507 million. Furthermore, the company’s latest funding round - Series F Round was undertaken on March 9, 2022, in which it raised a total of $300 million.
It is backed by 39 world-class investors, advisors, and board members, including 2 Nobel Prize-winning economists. Some of its main investors are PayPal, BlackRock, Bain Capital Ventures, DST Global, NBCUniversal, Comcast Ventures, Greycroft, Capital Group, Headline, and TPG.
Acorns - Patents and Trademarks
As per IPqwery, the intellectual property of the company currently has 20 registered patents, primarily in the category of ‘Computing’ and ‘calculating’. Furthermore, it has 28 registered trademarks categorized into the ‘Scientific and electric apparatus and instruments’ class.
Acorns - Partners
Presently, Acorns have a total of 26 partners in its portfolio. Some of the reputed names from the portfolio are Airbnb, ABC, Trust & Will, ZipRecruiter, BlackRock, Clarity Money, NBKC, and PayPal.
Acorns - Growth
As per Fortune’s Impact 20 list 2020, its customer count increased to 8.2 million. Additionally, it has over 4.6 million paid subscribers. With the company’s annual revenue is to be estimated at $84 million per year ($165,100 per employee) in 2022, Acorn’s current valuation stands at $2 billion. Moreover, its employee count increased by 25% last year.
The company has over 24,000 monthly app downloads, with Acorns: Invest Spare Change, Acorns: Save & Invest, and Acorns Stickers as the most popular apps.
Acorns - Competitors
More and more companies are establishing businesses in the Fintech industry to provide high-quality financial services which increases competition to a great extent. Some main competitors of Acorns are:
Who owns Acorns?
Acorns is an American financial technology company founded by four entrepreneurs named Jason Martell, Jeff Cruttenden, Walter Cruttenden, and Mark Dru.
Are Acorns safe to invest in?
Yes, Acorns is a safe platform to invest in because it complies with all the federal law rules related to digital safeguarding and bank-level physical security.
What is the best investing app for beginners?
Some of the best investing apps for beginners are Robinhood, stockpile, Acorns, etc.
Is Acorns a cryptocurrency?
No, Acorns is not a cryptocurrency instead it is an American financial technology and financial services providing company.