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COMPANY: Benjamin
INDUSTRY: Fintech, Personal Finance
FOUNDER: E. Tauriainen, J. Hyttinen, N. AlKhafif, K. Kaivonen
1 Aug 2023

Setting the Scene

  • Every credit card company advertises its cash back rewards to convince cardholders to purchase with them. ๐Ÿ’ธ

  • But how do rewards actually work?

    • Credit card companies negotiate agreements with merchants to offer cash back on certain spending activities.

    • As a result, both parties build customer loyalty, acquire users, and incentivize spending.

  • However, credit card rewards are not standardized, and cardholders are often unaware of their offerings, leaving money on the table.

  • This week's company provides a cash back platform that optimizes rewards for shoppers and runs rewards campaigns for merchants.

In a Sentence

Benjamin is a financial platform that enables credit card holders to optimize their rewards and merchants to engage shoppers.

  • Holders: Users link any credit or debit card, spend online or in-store, and claim cash back rewards through the Benjamin app.

  • Merchants: Brands of all sizes run cash back campaigns on the platform to acquire and incentivize customers.

  • Engage: The Benjamin app gamifies earning cash back, simplifies rewards, and builds user retention.

Bulleted Version

  • Think of Benjamin as your cash back concierge, aggregating and optimizing your rewards from all aspects of your spending. ๐Ÿค‘

The Basics:

  • Headquarters: NYC
  • Employee Count: 8
  • Investors:

    Antler, Expert Dojo, Steven Mak, Laura Palminen, Vesa Piltonen, Shlomi Haybi 

  • Currently raising: $2m pre-seed SAFE ($1m committed)
  • Business model: Commission from cash back offers, affiliate tasks, merchant campaigns
  • Early traction: Launched last week after a successful beta test, 6.5k active users growing 30% monthly, $27M GTV with linked cards, 60k online merchants, and 10k in-store merchants

Due Diligence

  • ๐Ÿ’ณ Credit card trends: As credit cards increase in usage and optionality, consumers are looking to select financial tools that optimize for rewards, personalization, and ease of use.

    • Benjaminโ€™s gamified platform helps the 23% of cardholders who haven't redeemed any rewards over the past year.

  • ๐Ÿ—บ The roadmap: Benjamin's vision extends beyond cash back, with plans for its own cards, personalized AI shopping, payment acceptance for merchants, premium subscriptions, and more.

    • This diversification builds multiple revenue streams beyond cash back fees including interchange, ad revenue, and subscriptions.

  • ๐Ÿค Beneficial to merchants: Benjamin enables all brands to engage with and reach new consumers through configurable campaigns, regardless of size or relationships with credit card companies.

  • ๐Ÿ Competitive landscape: Benjamin must convince consumers to adopt another finance app while also competing with well-funded credit card rewards giants.

  • ๐Ÿ‘“ Maintaining focus: With an ambitious roadmap, Benjamin must ensure it can execute its numerous product offerings from the onset.

  • ๐Ÿช Supply and demand: Benjamin's success relies on its ability to continually acquire a diverse range of merchant partners to offer compelling rewards to its users and onboard enough users to interest merchant customers.


Founder Profile

Why Benjamin

With a gamified platform that simplifies rewards and builds shopper loyalty, Benjamin is poised to cash in on its product that benefits consumers and merchants alike. ๐Ÿ’ฐ