Although it isn’t even public yet, fintech start-up SoFi is making some big moves. It recently acquired a bank and also announced its plans to bring IPO investing — historically available only to wealthy investors — to the masses. In this Fool Live clip, recorded on March 29, Fool.com contributor Matt Frankel, CFP, and Industry Focus host Jason Moser discuss why the fintech, which is set to merge with SPAC Social Capital Hedosophia Holdings V (NYSE:IPOE), could be a long-term winner.
Jason Moser: Yeah. I think that’s what is neat with banks, with companies like SoFi in these new tech-driven financial services companies, whether they’re their own banks or whether they’re just partnering up with financial institutions. It’s really great to see these companies focused on such an important issue in bringing financial tools to the masses, making it easier than ever to manage your financial life, whatever that may be, whether it’s just managing a checking account, paying your bills, investing, saving, budgeting, whatever it may be. It’s really neat to see all of the investments being made in the space. I think honestly, going back to SoFi and leadership there with Anthony Noto, to me, there’s a lot of trust that I afford SoFi simply because of him. Because I’ve followed him along through his career and what he’s done with Goldman (NYSE: GS), what he’s done with Twitter (NYSE: TWTR), or what he’s done at SoFi. Knowing his history in his job responsibilities for the NFL — this isn’t his first rodeo, so to speak. He has a lot of experience in this space and he also seems to be very customer-focused, and that can really be the differentiators when you are so customer focused. It’s one thing to say it, but it’s another thing to really do it and really execute on it. To me, at least at this point, Anthony Noto and SoFi are absolutely executing on that customer service front in bringing new tools and services and products to people that need them the most.
Matt Frankel: Yeah. I like each special services and products. SoFi is a lot more than Robinhood when it comes to products and services.
Frankel: That’s, I think, why I like them a lot more there. You get the vibe that they care about their users’ finances. They started out as a lender, primarily student loans was what they started out, like consolidation loans and things like that. They’ve gotten into personal loans, there’s like a whole financial community. They take other credit information into account. They take the user’s personal story into account. They had member meet-ups to help with personal finance before COVID. There were member meet-ups in pretty much every major city for SoFi members. It’s just like a real community of finance. It’s like the stock trading is just to complement everything. They try to emphasize long-term investment a lot more than Robinhood does I feel like. Robinhood is a trading platform, I think they’ve used that word.
Frankel: SoFi, it’s called SoFi Invest, it’s not called SoFi trading.
Frankel: They’re designed for long-term investors, and really that’s what IPO investing should be for. TD Ameritrade, for example, penalizes you if you sell your IPO shares. If you’re rich client, you get your IPOs shares, and you churn your IPO as they call it, you get penalized and you’ll get excluded from future deals, they’re really long term. That’s why SoFi really conveys like a long-term priority.
Moser: Yeah. I like that point a lot. Some folks have just consider it semantics and say, “Well, trade versus invest, big deal, they’re really the same thing.” Honestly, they’re not though. I think the longer you’ve invested, the more you realize very clearly they are absolutely two very different things. To me, that’s an excellent message that SoFi conveys.
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