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Startup Stories: Brendan Malone, Co-Founder & CEO of Raiz Invest Australia

Brendan joins us on the latest Startup Stories to talk about launching one of Australia’s first micro-investing apps.

by hao-nguyen on March 2, 2022

Brendan Malone is the co-founder & CEO of Raiz Invest Australia, one of Australia’s first micro-investing platform that allows users to invest their spare change from everyday purchases.

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Hi Brendan, great to have you here with us today. It’s been a while since we were chatting about work-life balance on Balance the Grind. For those who may not know, can you tell us a little about Raiz, and what led you to co-founding it?

Raiz is the micro-investing app that allows you to start investing with as little as $5. Raiz was one of the first micro-investing apps to launch in Australia, famously known for its round-ups feature, which automatically round-ups your spare change from everyday purchases and invests it into a diversified portfolio. The user-friendly app allows anyone to get started in minutes, empowering it’s users to save and invest small amounts regularly without even noticing it. 

Prior to Raiz, you owned two pubs in Australia, what was that experience like, and what drew you back into the business world?

After spending close to 20 years in banking and financial services this was a big change for me. I will not joke, it was hard work and I really didn’t appreciate the behind that work scenes that the hospitality industry does to make sure customers have a great experience and want to come back – it was fun but my passion was still in financial services and when George spoke to me about Acorns and I jumped at the chance to be involved and help with the financial education, literacy and inclusion that we envisage the Acorns app to all Australians and also now to all in South-East Asia.

What have been your biggest challenges over the past five years since launching Raiz, and what have been the key lessons you learnt from them?

It has been an awesome 7 years – taking the concept and pipeline of what we wanted, what our customers have requested and then turning all these into an app has been a great experience and a steep learning curve. 

I think the team have done exceptionally well on customer service, always listening to the feedback and acting on this feedback in a way that the user experience and look and feel is perfect. Working with a great team has helped with the pandemic and managing teams across borders and what is a key to the success is the communication they we all have.

How has your role as CEO changed, especially with the pandemic these past two years? 

It has definitely got more exciting each week, each month as new product developments and opportunities emerge across all our geographies – As mentioned above, it’s awesome to have a great team and what makes us one team is the communication, which is always transparent and clear, exactly how we want to talk to shareholder and members, we talk to each other in the same manner which is important.

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