Stack Co-Founders Natalie Young, Will Rush and Angela Masrenas
We recently took a deep dive into Web3 and identified tools and practices to make Web3 and crypto accessible to users as a key area of interest. And today, we’re excited to announce our investment in educating the younger, crypto-enthusiastic generation (and their parents) about the ins and outs of the crypto market.
Under 18 fiat and banking products have seen impressive growth over the past few years driven by social media. Emerging investors flocked to the stock market as the pandemic created a unique climate for retail investors. The rise of social media investment content has made Gen Z interested in learning about finance at a younger age, trying and learning how to take responsibility and control their finances in the process. Research shows that 71% of Gen Xers prefer financial information from people who look like them, leading them to increasingly become “Finflueners” – financial influencers – on TikTok. The hashtags #fintech and #investment have over 500 million and over 3.7 billion views, respectively. As investment demand surges, fiat products under the age of 18 have spawned eight unicorns, including Gen Z banking products Step, Acorns and Webull. Last year, Fidelity also launched youth business accounts.
Gen Z is considered the entrepreneurial generation. As a result, many are crypto-enthusiasts. Coinbase and FTX have served as consumer entry points to crypto through crypto trading and educational content. However, minors – the next generation of consumers – are not curious about cryptocurrencies, Web3 and modern technologies.
Insert stack. Stack is set to create a new category by being the first education-focused crypto app for the youth. We met the Stack team when they participated and won the Madrona Venture Lab (MVL) Web3 event, Launchable, earlier this year. Since then, Stack founder and CEO Will Rush has inspired us with his desire to build a product that will teach the next generation about finance and crypto safely by reading or watching it.
From its founding team, Natalie Young and Angela Mascarenas, Will is prioritizing safety and education in the Stack app. The team went through the heavy lifting to get the first Uniform Transfer to Minors Act (UTMA) license for crypto trading accounts. These UTMA accounts are familiar to some families who have used them in the past to teach their young children about savings and savings and mutual fund trading. The account is owned and controlled by the parent until the minor turns 18, but the teen has the ability to initiate trades (which must be approved by the parent). Parents can set trading and investment limits for their children. , and Stack requires all transactions to go through its platform instead of allowing users to move assets off-chain, thereby eliminating the main valve of fraud.
The team at Stack built this in collaboration with their customers. They created a high school ambassador program to engage early adopters and design a fun, educational product that complements the current finance, technology and web3 needs of young adults. The group has several high school investment circles interested in getting into the initial rollout. We find Stack’s 5,000-person waiting list impressive for its iOS or Android app.
Stack’s business model is designed with logic rather than business incentives. Unlike crypto exchanges that are over 18 years old, Stack is generating revenue through subscriptions, not transactions. Users receive daily bite-sized content and crypto in the app as an incentive to view.
Over the past two months, Will has been working with MVL and Madrona on the original product, team and launch strategies. We are impressed by their passion and passion and are excited to invest and help them grow. Additionally, we believe the Seattle Web3 ecosystem is on an upward trajectory and will increase demand for Madrona. Stack launched their Android app a few weeks ago that people can download from the app store. An iOS app is just around the corner, and we’re excited for it to be available to users.