Fintech Startup Step Secures $100 Million in New Funding, Announces Stephen Curry as an Investor

By Luigi Wewege Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Teen-focused banking startup company Step raised $100 million in the Series C round led by General Catalyst. Kyle Doherty will also be joining the startup company’s board, while NBA superstar Stephen Curry joins as an investor. The fintech business has secured over $175 million in funding to date.

A young woman using her credit card on her smartphone.

More Celebrities Join as Investors

The new business funding comes shortly after its Series B when Step raised $50 million. The company’s user base grew to over 1.5 million in just six months since its launch. The fintech startup has also expanded its celebrity pool of endorsements as it announced Stephen Curry participated in the funding round.

Series C also included participation from existing investors Coatue, Stripe, TikTok star Charli D’Amelio, The Chainsmokers, Will Smith, and Jeffrey Katzenberg. Franklin Templeton also participated in the funding, which suggests that the startup could soon focus on new business investments.

Aside from Stephen Curry, the startup company is also backed by actor Jared Leto, music star Justin Timberlake, as well as members of the former Square leadership, which includes Sarah Friar, Jacqueline Reses, and Gokul Rajaram.

“Our mission is to help improve the financial futures of the next generation and we’re thrilled to have such a massive vote of confidence from investors, especially during Financial Literacy Month,” said CJ MacDonald, founder and CEO at Step.

MacDonald adds that his fintech business hasn’t even spent the capital raised in Series B but believes the fresh boost can help facilitate its business growth. He said that Step doesn’t need new capital but believes speed to market it is crucial and will allow the company to invest in its business infrastructure.

Step also wants to hire more employees and reinforce its engineering, product, and design teams as a part of its goal to double its 65-person team within a year.

The startup has designed a fintech app that targets teenagers aged between 13-18. The app provides teenagers with access to an FDIC-insured bank account without fees and a secured Visa card via which they establish credit before they turn 18. Step also has a money transfer feature similar to Venmo.

“Thirty-eight percent of teens say they lack the financial resources needed to achieve financial independence and this is a problem Step is well positioned to help solve as we educate millions of households every day,” MacDonald notes.

The fintech startup company said its business growth has been driven by a group of factors, including the use of social media and its referral program, which paid a couple of dollars for each new sign-up.

But the company has also largely benefited from its partnerships with celebrities like Charlie D’Amelio, Josh Richards, Justin Timberlake, who invested in the company, and now Stephen Curry.

The fintech business is also aware that its existing users will eventually get older and it plans to foray into the credit and lending market at some point, as well as make new business investments.

Summary

Step, a fintech service that targets teenagers, announced it raised $100 million in a new funding round led by General Catalyst. The company, which has also welcomed Stephen Curry as an investor, raised $175 million in total funding to date.

About the Author


Headshot of Luigi Wewege

Luigi Wewege is the Senior Vice President and Head of Private Banking at Caye International Bank. Outside of the bank, he serves as an instructor at the FinTech School which provides online training courses on the latest technology and innovation developments within the financial services industry. Luigi is also the published author of "The Digital Banking Revolution."

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