Daily

LEARNING LENDERS

Youth-focused student loan services multiply

As discovered in our Generations Report, the majority of Ys and Zs in the U.S. (69% and 59%, respectively) are often stressed about their finances; in fact, Ys are more likely than Zs, Xers, and Boomers to be stressed about money. To combat this, brands are offering financial services in every area from affordable insurance to pay-as-you-go purchasing programs. The following companies are offering youth-focused student loan programs to help Millennials and Gen Zs focus on getting their education, not paying for it.

COMMONBOND

Artificial intelligence isn’t all fun and games—A.I. can also provide useful information, such as the financial services offered by NextGenVest. The Gen Z financial advice company, which communicates with its users through text message and supplies 24/7 service on its A.I.-powered platform, was acquired by CommonBond this past winter. CommonBond targets Millennials with its simple student loan services, and now it’s becoming even more of a youth financial powerhouse with Gen Z-focused NextGenVest under its wing.

EARNEST

Earnest has used technology and customer service to help refinance over $4 billion in student loans, following its promise to “bring low-interest loans to high-potential people.” More than half (54%) of Gen Zs aged 14-21 worry about work/school, and paying for their education is a significant stress factor. To make this easier, Earnest offers students an easy two-minute eligibility check, transparency before signing, and an extended grace period—nine months, compared to the industry standard of six, which gives post-grads more time to settle in after college before addressing their loans.

LAUREL ROAD

Online student loan business Laurel Road was acquired by KeyBank this spring. Laurel Road offers student loan refinancing and graduate school loans in all 50 states, and prides itself on personalized service, an attribute that is very important to Millennial and Gen Z customers. Using its wide network and sizable resources, KeyBank plans to build upon Laurel Road’s existing online lending technology, focus on strategic partnerships and direct-to-market branding, and more to deliver a holistic experience to Millennial professionals.

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