Aspiration, the financial services startup, rolled out a new a feature in its mobile banking app that tracks the spending of its customers and provides reports on the impact their consumption has on society at the end of the month.
According to a report in TechCrunch, Aspiration tracks how the companies people purchase things from perform in terms of how they treat their employees and the communities they operate in and how environmentally friendly the companies are.
“In this day and age, money talks,” said cofounder Andrei Cherny, a former Bill Clinton speechwriter. “Imagine weaponizing that consumer sentiment and putting it in your pocket.”
The new feature for the mobile banking app has been in the works for close to a year. The feature tracks 75,000 data points on close to 5,000 companies, looking at things like diversity, employee pay, energy efficiency and carbon footprint, noted TechCrunch.
Aspiration, which is based in Los Angeles, has around $200 million in assets under management and has been the top-performing sustainable investment fund for the past year, noted TechCrunch. The report noted that the ideas behind Aspiration is something Cherny has long been focused on: enabling consumers to understand the power of the purse. The report noted that of the $36 billion consumers spend in the U.S., choosing where to spend based on the social stance of a company can have an impact on the corporate behavior of the company. Take Fox News and Bill O’Reilly, its mega star for twenty-one years. When reports surfaced about allegations of sexual harassments and hush money pay-outs surfaced, advertisers pulled their ads in droves.