This is an action-packed update, so grab a ☕. We’ve been pretty secretive about the details but it’s time to start talking…
🐣 Swell is a New Year’s Baby
Swell was incubated inside of a bank (in Hawaii) for over a year. One of the secrets of “neobank” companies like Swell is that we’re all required to have a “sponsor bank”. And Swell has a great one—Central Pacific Bank (CPB),1 a 65-year old bank with $7 billion in assets (CPB’s parent company is publicly traded—NYSE: CPF). CPB is both our sponsor and an investor (For some background check out this thread).
Eventually, every bird has to leave the nest—so Swell became an independent company as of January 1, 2022, backed by CPB, another strategic partner, and a private equity firm.
I’m the CEO and I’m joined by 10 other “Swellions” and growing—we’re on a mission to change the broken banking system.
What is Swell?
The basic idea behind Swell is this:
Banks make huge profits (the top 5 banks made $145 BILLION in profit last year) yet 99% of us say that our bank doesn’t do anything to help us get ahead. The system is rigged in favor of the wealthy—even more than most people know.
Swell is setting out to change the system by building 2 things:
- A Community of like-minded people who want to work together to make the same “money moves” as the wealthiest, smartest people.
- An App that can replace traditional bank products. The Swell App makes money moves easy, with everything you need to control spending, reduce debt, and invest with the best.
The Swell app has 3 main components
Swell CashTMA full-featured FDIC-insured checking account1 with no monthly fees, no overdrafts, and up to 1.25% Annual Percentage Yield on your deposits.2 We’re building fun tools to help you control spending automatically without a complicated budget. You won’t find a better checking account anywhere.
A personal line of credit that’s integrated with Swell Cash (you don’t need a separate card).1 Swell Credit helps you manage monthly expenses and finance big purchases. Unlike credit cards, it’s designed to help you pay down your debt. Use Swell Credit to consolidate higher-interest debt from credit cards and other loans. With lower interest rates,Swell makes it easy to simplify your finances, save on interest, and get your debt paid off faster.
This is the thing everyone is talking about—it’s Swell’s ground-breaking take on investing, available only to Swell members. Swell Compound gives you access to exclusive private investment opportunities normally available only to wealthy people who can invest $100,000 or more. With Compound, Swell members will be able to invest like the “big guys” with as little as $1,000.
Interest in Swell Compound has been huge, and Swell has begun working with investment professionals to file “Reg. A” offering materials with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). “Reg A” offerings allow companies like Swell to bring together lots of smaller investors and combine their investments into big deals that wouldn’t be available to them individually. Swell's technology will make it easy for Swell members to track everything they invest.
Initially, Swell Compound will focus on investment opportunities in high-quality real estate, such as multi-family (apartment complexes), industrial warehouses, and luxury, short-term rental properties. We will collaborate with the best of the best real estate investment firms with proven track records. The firms we’re working with have averaged historical annual returns of 20% or more across dozens of deals.3 These firms normally accept only accredited investors (high-income individuals and individuals with high net worth, i.e., millionaires) and have minimum investments as high as $500,000.
Over time Swell Compound will explore other opportunities to invest in assets other than real estate. There’s no limit to what we can do together!
We have more ground-breaking features planned for the future including our take on crypto trading and Swell Home, a unique spin on owning and managing your home.
Thank you for taking this journey with us. It means everything to me and the rest of the Swellions.