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Wagestream Raises $21.8 Million to Expand Financial Well-Being App

Wagestream, a financial well-being app focused on frontline workers, has raised 17.5 million pounds (about $21.8 million) in a funding round.

That total includes an investment of 7 million pounds (about $8.7 million) by British Patient Capital alongside other co-investors, including Lombard Odier Investment Managers and existing investor Northzone, British Patient Capital said in a Wednesday (April 17) press release.

“We believe frontline workers deserve essential services and better financial futures,” Wagestream Co-founder and CEO Peter Briffett said in the release. “More than 1,000 employers agree. Together we’re closing the gap, with a platform that helps wherever people are in their financial life — from paying off debt, to saving for the first time, to building a credit file and planning for the future.”

Wagestream was founded in 2018 and its platform is currently offered through 1,000 employers in the United Kingdom, Spain and the United States, including Asda, Bupa, Burger King, Hilton and the National Health Service (NHS), according to the release.

It allows 3 million employees — mainly shift and frontline workers — to access an interactive pay slip, choose when to get paid, save and get debt advice, the release said.

With its latest funding, Wagestream will continue to expand its services, aiming to become a “complete financial platform” for low- and middle-income workers, per the release. This year, the company plans to add a credit-builder card, shopping discounts, loans and artificial intelligence (AI)-powered financial coaching.

“FinTech innovation is needed to tackle the challenge of inequity between financial products aimed at higher earners and products for underserved shift and frontline workers who also require those essential services,” Tom Haywood, investment director at British Patient Capital, said in the release. “Not only is it a rapidly growing business, but it is also providing critical services for an underserved and critical group of workers.”

Wagestream’s delivery of wages on demand quickly proved to be valuable to workers in the U.K. There, 85% of employees are paid monthly, Briffett told PYMNTS in an interview posted in May 2019.

“That’s probably because payroll is expensive, administrative-intensive and the fewer times you can do it, the better — from an employer point of view,” Briffett said. “But that tends to not help the employee.”