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Marketplace Morning Report

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Sep 23, 2019

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This Is Uncomfortable

Online banking platform SoFi targets "high earners, not rich yet"

Molly Wood and Stephanie Hughes Dec 20, 2016
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Americans hold over $1.2 trillion in student debt, and more than $8.3 trillion in mortgages. Now, more of that debt is being held not by traditional banks, but by online lenders.  

Social Finance, or SoFi, is the largest online lender in the country, originating approximately a billion dollars in credit a month across personal loans, student loan refinancing and mortgages. Mike Cagney is the CEO, and he said what’s unique about the company is their focus on HENRYs — the acronym stands for high earners, not rich yet. 

“It’s a customer segment the banking industry has struggled to deliver value to, primarily because there’s a lot of misconceptions around millennial customers — the idea that they’re fickle, they’re not loyal…we’ve found that really not to be the case.”

One thing SoFi does is try to create a sense of community among its debtors. For example, they hold networking and dating events for their members.  

“We like to create household units and sell mortgages; that’s always a plus in terms of the dating events, but at the end of the day, what we’re trying to do is improve our members’ lives. The better off they are, the better off they’re doing with their career, their family, their relationships, the better our relationship is with them,” Cagney said.

Listen to the full interview above.

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