BaaS Company Spotlight 2/8: Green Dot – A full service BaaS for non-fintechs
- Green Dot did much of the early work in the banking as a service industry.
- Now, the company works with firms like Uber and Apple.
This spotlight of a leading banking as a service provider is part of Tearsheeet’s coverage of BaaS. Please see our BaaS Buyers Guide for more information.
- Who we spoke to: Dov Marmor, head of Banking as a Service
- Establishment date: 2004
- API Documentation: https://developer.greendot.com/
- Bank license: Yes
Green Dot is one of the oldest BaaS providers, and in a way, its success helped start the space. With a mission to provide ‘fair and affordable banking services to the masses’, Green Dot’s initial foray into BaaS began with a Walmart partnership in 2004 that allowed unbanked customers access to banking services.
On the back of the Walmart partnership, Green Dot decided to go full-on BaaS in 2015. It wasn’t until their earnings call in 2016 that the company really went public with this strategy. The Green Dot investor community started to use the term ‘Banking as a Service’, attributing it to Green Dot. Now, with clients like Uber, Apple, and Stash, Green Dot has over 5 million accounts on its platform.
Green Dot offers debit cards as a critical piece of their offering. It also provides specialized marketing services to support the success of its program, like card design and presentation. Green Dot handles account origination, payments, compliance and fraud, card issuance, marketing and branding — basically everything needed to run an end to end BaaS program.
Green Dot offers white label apps, customization according to customer requirements, and APIs if customers want to customize on their own.
As Green Dot provides both a bank and BaaS technology, it’s really the fin and the tech, offering a turnkey solution to companies that want to add banking services into their products.
Green Dot claims there’s not another player in the market that truly does what it does, although with newer offerings in the market like BankMobile, Green Dot may be looking at more competition down the line.
Chief Customer / Core Focus
Green Dot’s target customers are large companies with large customer bases that have unique capabilities and needs in the market and want to build financial services for their customers.
As the population becomes increasingly mobile, people want to interact with the brands that they love. Green Dot enables these companies to offer financial products that represent their brands. Big customers like Uber and Walmart are good partners for Green Dot because they want to operate in financial services but don’t want to be distracted by compliance and regulation, customer care, and managing bank technologies.
Definition of BaaS
“To launch banking products, quickly and efficiently, by using the infrastructure of another established financial services company.”
Green Dot plans to make its partner program one of the leading BaaS providers in the space.
Clients and Case Studies
Uber: Uber drivers used to wait to get paid. Uber wanted to give its drivers the ability to cash out their earnings instantly. So they partnered with Green Dot to issue debit cards to their drivers, allowing them to get paid up to five times per day. The card also offers discounts and cash back on relevant products, like gas and car maintenance.
Apple Pay: Apple users can pay online and in store using Apple Pay right from their device instead of presenting a debit or credit card. The funds are kept on a virtual debit card issued by Green Dot.