Today, in a move aimed at bringing newer and younger depositors to the bank, JPMorgan Chase and Co. has announced the launch of Finn — a new smartphone app designed to allow users to open a bank account, make deposits, issue checks, track spending and set up savings plans all in one place.
According to bank officials talking to Reuters, Finn debit cards will come by mail for access to cash from 29,000 ATMs. The first tests of the new app will be for Apple users in the greater St. Louis area, where Chase currently has no branches.
Chase, with $2.56 trillion in assets, is the largest bank in the U.S. and hopes to grow larger, aided by Finn, as it rolls out to other U.S. cities and Android phone owners later this year — when mobile enrollment opens up for standard checking and savings accounts.
“Finn lets us reach new customers and new markets,” Thasunda Duckett, chief executive of Chase Consumer Banking, said in an interview. The app account, she said, “was built by millennials for millennials.”
Apart from being a tool to woo younger and hotly competed-for consumers, the new app will also give Chase an idea of how far the bank’s consumer deposit business can travel beyond the 23 states where it has branches.
CEO Jamie Dimon has repeatedly postponed his years-long dream to expand into new states, as it would be costly, require approval of regulators and could be especially risky when people use branches less often. And Chase can’t buy its way to more depositors, because at its current size, regulators would likely get a good chuckle before firmly saying no.
Duckett’s team developed the Finn app after interviews with about 250 potential millennial customers. Those interviews led the mobile app to be developed around making controlling spending simpler and more intuitive.
About two-thirds of Chase customers continue to visit branches at least once every three months. “This is for a different set of customers,” said Melissa Feldsher, head of Finn.
Reports indicated that JPMorgan designed Finn from scratch, without relying on what FinTech companies have created.
“We always look at what is going on, but we led with what customers were telling us,” Duckett said.
JPMorgan did use outside firms, as it has developed applications for auto, mortgage and small business lending.