Why we share our revenue with our users

By Davy Kestens
your share of the cake

Whenever we earn money, all active Cake users earn money. Why? Because we believe you deserve your share of the Cake! 🍰
We are the app that rewrites the rules. To make sure you always get your piece. Learn more about why we have decided to share our revenues.

At Cake we share our revenue with our users. Whenever we earn money, all active Cake users earn money. Why? Because we believe you deserve your share of the Cake! 🍰

Let us explain why we decided to do so.

On January 31st 2020, after 14 months of development, we released the first public version of Cake, the profitable banking app. Cake is a new independent banking app that helps you manage all your bank accounts in one single place.

Even though the app is still in its early stages, this day marked an important milestone towards our mission of improving the financial well-being of the everyday consumer. 

At Cake, we believe we can strengthen people’s financial lives by giving them a bank-independent tool that makes daily banking easier. A user-friendly app that gives you insights in your cash flows, that guides you towards positive spending habits, and that creates new opportunities to make your bank accounts profitable again.

Let us explain why…

Tackling today’s challenges

🏦 The need for better banking

These days, it almost feels like a better idea to stuff your money under a mattress than to leave it in your bank account. 

Bank accounts with no interest will become commonplace. In 2019, the average interest rate on consumer savings accounts in Belgium was 0,11% while inflation was 1,5%. Over the last 10 years, between 35 and 40 billion euros in purchasing power went up in smoke. (source)

Additionally, banks are charging us every month for the most basic services. A few euros here for a checking account, a few over there for that one international wire transfer, and then a few more because you withdrew cash at the wrong competitor’s ATM. 

These charges are often hidden in agreements you never fully read or understood, masked by complex wording and opaque fee structures.

Banks have evolved to become paid providers of standardized services, rarely going above and beyond for individual customers unless those customers are rich. 

We believe this needs to change.

🤔 The need for better financial insights 

Did you know that thirteen million Europeans fall below the poverty line despite having full-time jobs? 

About 14% of working-age Europeans cannot afford to get together with friends or family over a drink at least once a month, and one out of three people are unable to face unexpected financial expenses. And the current Covid-19 crisis is definitely going to make this situation even worse. Research shows that one in ten Belgians are forced to use their savings to make ends meet. Many are left wondering if they have a large enough financial buffer to simply survive this crisis.

There is very little transparency in the world of personal finance. We often don’t know very well how we’re doing financially. People rarely discuss the details of their income and spending with friends or family. This lack of financial insights makes it easy to maintain poor financial habits. 

It should be easy to figure out how much you should set aside for a rainy day. When to ask for a raise and how much you should ask for. Or it should only take 1 minute to figure out the max rent you can actually afford to pay for your new apartment.

We believe this needs to change.

🌍 The need for fair use of data

In today’s hyper-connected world, our data is being used everywhere. 

On one hand this is making our lives easier. We can use many online services for free. We can look up personalized information faster, we can easily message with friends from all over the world, and we can save thousands of pictures on our social media pages.

On the other hand, the companies that offer these services use our data to generate money. A lot of it. Facebook sells online advertising space based on which pages you like, the photos you took and the websites you’ve visited. Google allows brands to advertise to you based on the emails you’ve sent to your friends and colleagues, or based on the keywords you’ve used in their search engine. 

But companies also earn money on data that is less visible. For example, telecom operators help the government better understand how and when people are physically moving between cities to help improve mobility, by selling analysis of cell-phone locations (as in this Belgian example). As a consumer you often don’t know this, because this information is usually hidden in the small print of their terms of use. 

This is the new normal, and it’s not going to change soon. Data is generating a lot of money. The challenge though, is that the people who generate the data rarely get rewarded for it.

We believe that if your data is used to generate revenues, you should at the very least, get your share of the cake!

We believe this needs to change.

When we earn money, we share the Cake

For over a year and a half now, we have been working on building tools and analyzing data to make our mission, to help people control and improve their daily finances, a reality.👷

And even though we’re not quite there yet, there are already a lot of meaningful ways Cake can help you answer your most pressing questions. Like for instance determine what your financial buffer looks like.

And we’ll keep on building new tools that you need to support your financial choices. 

The good thing is that using our app is free. You pay nothing. Nada. Zilch.
And Cake even makes your bank account profitable again.

How do we do this? 

We make money in a different way, by using our users’ data. But we don’t just hand it over, and certainly not your personal details. We never directly sell our users’ individual data to anyone. 

We process all data across all Cake users and turn it into anonymized statistical reports, insights and graphs, which we then sell to large companies. These companies are interested in these reports to make better-informed strategic decisions. 

For example, if you spend a lot of money at shoe stores, your transactions could be used to generate a data report for a big shoe retailer, informing them which shoe stores sell the most shoes in your region.

This then tells the retailer, for example, where it might be a good idea to open up new shops.

To better understand how we do this you can check out this video and blogpost.

💡Our income does not come from charging the consumer (like banks do) but comes from companies. 

In this way, we can not only make sure that using the app stays free for all our users, but that the app starts generating cash for our users as well. This happens through Rewards.

We believe it’s only fair to give you a share of the revenues, when your data is used to generate it. 

We are the app that rewrites the rules. To make sure you always get your piece. 🤝

🚀 Did you know Cake was awarded Belgian Startup company of the Year? 🥳
Read all about it in this article.

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