Tandem gives ‘modern couples’ app to manage finances together and separatelyReading Time: 3 minutes
Commingling finances can be a scary endeavor for people who have decided to share their lives with each other. With people marrying later in life, this often means moving in with someone before any nuptials take place — if they ever do.
This was the dilemma Michelle Winterfield experienced when she moved in with her partner a few years prior to getting married. They had all the usual conversations: opening a joint account and having joint credit cards.
When Winterfield, who was a private equity investor on Wall Street, couldn’t find an app that focused on what she called ‘the modern couple,’ she and co-founder Daniel Couvreur, a former investment banker, set out to build one two years ago.
Their result is Tandem, a fintech app that addresses the first financial milestones for couples and grows with the relationship via planning, saving and spending features. The subscription-based app launched in August 2023.
‘We were both tired of using Venmo to share rent, groceries, and plenty of other expenses with our significant others, and we saw no appeal in a joint debit card/account – who wants to give up credit card points/cash back and deal with the pain of opening a joint account + combining finances?’ Couvreur wrote in a LinkedIn post two years ago.
How it works
Users get set up on Tandem in minutes. One person logs in and invites their partner. Both connect their credit card and/or debit card. Tandem pulls in transactions, however, each partner only sees what the other wants them to see, Winterfield said.
Couples can set up automated money transfers into a shared expense pot and designate it to certain expenses, for example, rent or Netflix. More than 25,000 couples currently use Tandem, which has managed $60 million in expenses thus far.
‘It gives you the experience of a joint account without actually having to have one,’ Winterfield said. ‘Everything you do want to share is in one space, so it eliminates the back-and-forth. You can also settle up any balances whenever you are ready.’
Investors are also keen on the idea, recently pumping $3.7 million into Tandem. Corazon Capital led the round and was joined by a group of individual investors and executives from companies including OkCupid, Match Group and Tinder.
‘I have rarely seen consumers love a product so much, underscoring the need for innovative solutions for the modern couple,’ said Sam Yagan, co-founder and managing director of Corazon Capital, via email. ‘As a relationship expert, I have long believed in the need for a product to help couples navigate the unique challenges of managing their finances. Tandem stands out as a platform of reliability, trust and modernity and helps new and existing relationships thrive financially and emotionally.’
Tandem is not alone in going after this problem. We’ve previously reported on companies tailoring financial services to couples, like Plenty, Honeydue, Zeta, Ivella and Ensemble, which is for divorced people who co-parent.
Many of Tandem’s competitors focus on providing a debit card to share expenses, which Winterfield said can be a big step for people who are just starting their financial lives.
‘We really wanted to build this with the consumer in mind as opposed to offering banking products,’ she said. ‘We also wanted to create a much more automated experience that really solves this pain point first for our core demographic.’
Tandem crowdsources its potential features from its user base, and a majority of users inspired the next set of features called ‘Goals,’ going live this week. The Goals feature is based on starting a plan for shared purchases that both members of the couple will work on.
For example, you set a goal together — buying new furniture — and choose how much each will contribute to that goal each month. Then each person can pull in websites or apps to grab various products to add to your goals so everyone is on the same page and no one person feels like they are doing it alone.
The new capital will go into launching this new feature, marketing and growing the team. In addition, an Android app is coming soon.
Initially, Tandem launched with a ‘choose your own price’ model. With the new feature now here, the platform will go live with a $10 per couple, per month annual pricing or $12 per couple, per month paying monthly.
‘We want to build something that integrates very seamlessly, lets you share everything in a very automated way without actually having to take that next step and sign up for a joint card together,’ Winterfield said. ‘Tandem allows you to maintain that independence while also building a life together.’
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