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Letter News

Introducing Moka: Why Mylo is rebranding

If you’ve downloaded the newest version of our app or visited our website recently, you’ll have noticed a big change: we rebranded!

I’m thrilled to introduce Moka, the new and improved Mylo.

Since launching in 2017, our automated saving and investing app has been downloaded by over 750,000 Canadians in every province and territory, and we’ve helped our users save and invest to achieve goals like celebrating their marriage, buying a house, starting a business and preparing for retirement.

And we’re just getting started! This year, we’re focusing on evolving our product beyond investing spare change and expanding internationally to Europe, so we needed a name that resonates around the world in every language and country.

We loved being Mylo and we’re proud of everything we’ve accomplished as a company and for our users with this name, but we are excited to announce a new name that will better serve our growing global community and our mission to help you achieve your financial goals. 

Meet Moka

There’s this myth that millennials are struggling financially because they’re buying lattes and avocado toast, but that just isn’t true. We are facing different financial challenges than our parents’ generation, so we need different financial services. We’re not looking for a lecture from a financial advisor: we want better technology and tools that can empower us to save and invest more. 

That’s where Moka comes in. The app doesn’t dictate what you can or can’t do with your money. Instead, Moka lets you live the life you want today while building towards an even brighter future. 

The way it works is simple. You tell Moka what you want to do and the app will show you how to achieve it. The app kick-starts your personal finance goals, and it makes saving more, spending less and investing smarter a daily practice. Moka gives you the power to accomplish great things.

How will this change impact Canadians?

Along with our new name, we’re also launching a fresh new look and refreshing our features so you can get #morewithmoka. We’re enhancing the app to help you keep more of your hard earned money, which is why our new logo shows a coin landing in an open hand. (To see Moka for yourself, make sure you download the latest version of the app!) 

Our name and visual identity have changed, but we’re still passionate about helping you achieve your financial goals. Moka, like Mylo, exists because of the people who use our app, because of you. In fact, we’re working on some innovative new features that will help you reduce expenses, pay down debt and save more when you spend. We can’t wait to tell you about them soon!

If you have any thoughts or questions about our rebrand, we’re always happy to hear from you. 

Thanks for using Moka!

Sincerely,

Philip Barrar

Founder & CEO, Moka

Categories
Letter News

Why every day is a good day to talk about money and women

Making financial services more inclusive is what motivates me. Imagine if financial services could actually help everyone live a better life and reach their goals. Imagine if your access to financial tools didn’t depend on how much money you make or who you are. I’ve spent my career working for financial inclusion because of the positive impact these tools can make for everyone—especially for women. 

It’s why joining Moka was a natural move. Moka’s social mission is perfectly aligned with my belief that technology and innovation can empower people and that everyone should have an equal opportunity to save toward the life they want.  

It’s also why it’s always important to me to talk about the financial inequality that still exists between men and women in Canada.

Statistics Canada reports that on average, Canadian women aged between 25 and 54 still earn 13.3% less per hour than men. On top of the pay gap, factors like the ‘Motherhood Penalty’ (which even affects non-mothers), the ‘Pink Tax’ (which sees us paying up to 43% more than men do for the same products) and differences in financial attitudes all contribute to an uneven financial playing field for women. 

When it comes to investing, women are investing 40% less money than men, and as a result are missing out on important opportunities to grow their wealth. Moka’s mission to make investing accessible to everyone means that supporting the unique needs of women is core to our business, starting with an inclusive product. 

Women are demanding. If a product meets women’s needs, it will exceed men’s expectations. And we know that a diverse team gives us the best shot at inclusive products, which is why we’ve worked to ensure strong representation of women across all our teams. 

We’ve also released two International Women’s Day reports in 2018 and 2019, which outlined other initiatives such as the Moka SRI fund to address women’s investing interests and marketing campaigns that celebrate and empower us. 

We’re proud to see the results of these efforts, including:

  • In 2019, Moka’s female user base doubled. Women now make up 40% of our total user base, which is 67% higher than the industry benchmark
  • Almost 65% of female Advantage users have opened TFSA accounts through Moka to benefit from valuable tax savings. 
  • 1 in 2 female Advantage users choose the Moka Socially Responsible Investing fund to invest according to their values.
  • Moka women save faster towards their goals. They reach their savings goals 2 weeks earlier than men do because they contribute more aggressively and more frequently to their financial goals.
  • 1 in 4 Moka women have an emergency fund goal to help ensure their own financial security in the event of unexpected financial situations. Having 3-6 months of living expenses accessible in the event of an unplanned emergency is a critical step in achieving good financial health.
  • Moka women save more of their disposable income than men.
    On average, Moka men and women contribute a similar percentage of their income to their Moka investment account, but when you consider that women earn less and have higher expenses (see gender pay gap and Pink Tax), women are likely putting aside more of their disposable income. 

While these are all great signals and evidence that we’re making progress, there’s still a lot of work to be done. In 2020 and beyond, we’re committed to adapting our product experience to address the distinct needs of women, promoting internal diversity, and increasing financial literacy with our magazine and our monthly newsletters. 

We’re also going beyond saving and investing by developing new products to address issues we’ve identified as especially relevant to women, such as a lack of access to financial advice and debt management.

Finally, we’re asking the entire Moka community to join us in our mission by doing one simple thing.

Talk.

Talk about making money.

Talking about money has long been taboo, but new evidence is showing how impactful it can be to share information about how much money you make. Discussing this more openly with friends and coworkers can help you to understand your worth and highlight any gaps to tackle. This kind of transparency is a personal decision but the payoff could be huge. It could help you get paid what you deserve, or be an ally to others. 

In fact, a 2019 study by Stats Canada showed that pay transparency laws contributed to a 30% reduction in the gender wage gap.

Pro tip: Don’t forget to talk about your salary with your boss. And if you think your pay doesn’t reflect your value in the market, particularly in relation to your male peers, then ask for a raise. Here’s an article to help you do it.

Talk about money in general.

Turn money into a regular conversation topic, particularly with other women. Smart women know other smart women. Ask them how they manage their money, or if they have any tips and tricks to share. Talk to each other about any financial struggles or worries you’re having, and brainstorm strategies to overcome them. Share your favourite financial books, blogs or podcasts. Find a friend in a similar situation and become accountability buddies. 

Talking is also the way we track progress, so take the time to have a conversation with someone from a previous generation, like your mother or grandmother. Although things have changed, they probably have some words of wisdom that still apply. 

There’s a lot we can learn from each other if we just take the time to chat.

Pro tip: If you have a partner, talking about money is critical to ensure you’re on the same page and have an equal say in key financial decisions. This can help you get the conversation started. 

Talk about your goals.

Having something tangible to save towards will keep you motivated and on track. My advice?  The more personal, the better. You’ll find it easier to save and invest money towards a goal that means something to you, like a much-needed vacation or your first home.

Once you’ve set some goals, talk about them. Discuss what you’re saving towards, how you’re saving towards them and then celebrate when you achieve them!

You could even set joint goals. You’re more likely to save towards that Mexico trip if your friends are saving right alongside you. 

And don’t be afraid to dream big. Our 2019 International Women’s Day report showed that women set financial goals 42% lower than men. Encourage each other to aim high and cheer each other on until you get there. 

Pro tip: Want to get there effortlessly? Moka is a goal-based platform that automatically rounds up your purchases and invests the spare change towards your goals. 

And to celebrate International Women’s Day and encourage women to begin investing, we’re offering new users $10 towards their financial goals. Simply create a new Moka investment account before April 8, 2020 and use the promo code IWD2020.

Happy investing!

Jennifer McDonald
Chief Operating Officer, Moka

Categories
Letter News

Another milestone reached: Why Moka’s $10 million financing is a win for you

We started Moka to respond to a serious issue affecting Canadian millennials. For a variety of reasons, most of us struggle to save money, causing us to delay major life milestones like moving out, buying a house, getting married or having kids. We believe that everyone should have an equal opportunity to save and invest towards their financial goals, regardless of their income, financial savvy or the resources at their disposal.

That was two years ago, and we’re thrilled to report that since then, nearly half a million Canadians have created accounts to automate their savings and investments with Moka.

We’re also excited to announce today that Moka has raised an additional $10 million in funding, thanks to our new lead investors at NAventures, National Bank’s corporate venture capital arm, and the ongoing support of our existing partners, including Desjardins Capital, Ferst Capital Partners and Tactico Inc., which also invested in this round. 

Since closing the financing, I’ve been asked several times about what this means for Moka. While there will definitely be some exciting new developments, the important things will never change. 

Our mission remains the same: to help you achieve your financial goals.

It’s why we get out of bed in the morning, and that’s never going to change. We understand that your financial goals are often part of bigger life objectives, and we’re proud to have helped over 450,000 Canadians start working towards milestones like owning a home or becoming debt-free. This new investment allows us to help even more Canadians begin saving and investing.

Saving and investing is just the beginning.

In January 2019, we launched Moka Advantage to offer you access to smarter investing tools like TFSA and RRSP accounts, socially responsible investing options and next-day withdrawals.

To truly achieve our mission, we’ll need to go beyond saving and investing. We’re working on new products to help you overcome any financial roadblocks that stand in your way, whether it’s debt or a down payment.  

We’ve spoken to thousands of Moka users and Canadians across the country to learn about their financial challenges and dreams. The feedback has been really eye-opening, and we’ve heard you loud and clear. We can’t wait to tell you about all the new features and services we’re working on. Stay tuned!

We only succeed when you succeed.

Our priority will always be your financial success, and with the support of two major financial institutions, I assure you that our priorities won’t change. We are dedicated to providing a world-class fintech experience to help our community achieve their financial goals.

You can still connect accounts from nearly all Canadian financial institutions, and we will continue to make saving and investing accessible to all, regardless of which bank or institutions you do business with. We’ll only recommend third-party financial services and products to our users when we feel it is in their best financial interest. 

We’re building a world-class team that’s dedicated to your financial success.

As Moka grows, so does our team of smart, passionate people who truly believe in helping you achieve your goals. We are currently looking to hire new talent for all our departments. If you’re interested in joining us on our important mission, check out our open positions here.

On behalf of everyone at Moka, thanks for placing your trust in us and for allowing us to be part of your own financial journey. We’re only just getting started, and we can’t wait to continue reaching milestones together! 

Sincerely,

Philip Barrar
Founder & CEO, Moka

To read more about the fundraising, see the press release here.

If you have any thoughts or questions, we’re always happy to hear from you. Just send a message to support@moka.ai.

Categories
Letter News

Why we’re promoting financial literacy this month and every month

Financial literacy can have a huge impact on your life. Sometimes even just a little knowledge can go a long way. When I first started saving, I was only putting away a dollar or so at a time, and I remember being surprised at how quickly it added up. This simple insight helped me save for my goals, and it’s why we started Moka to help others do the same.

Understanding the basics of personal finance can help everyone improve their outlook and achieve their financial goals.

At Moka, we believe that financial literacy and financial technology should work hand in hand. Learning about personal finance should be accessible, easy, and even fun.

That’s why this November for Financial Literacy Month, we’ll be sharing content that explores a variety of personal finance topics, including budgeting, saving and investing, conquering debt, and nurturing credit.

To get started, we’re publishing a story about how the stock market works. We know it’s exciting to watch your investments grow and equally scary when your investments go down, so we hope this article will give you some important context about recent volatility in the financial markets.

We feel privileged to be supporting you on your financial journey. If you have any specific questions, ideas or feedback about financial literacy, please send them our way.

Sincerely,

Phil

Phil Barrar
Founder and CEO