San Francisco-based online banking platform, Slash, has come out of stealth mode with a total of $19 million in seed and Series A funding. The funding rounds were led by NEA, with the participation of Menlo Ventures, Connect Ventures, Y Combinator (also backed Curacel, Tranch, Aerones, Hannah Life), Soma Capital, Global Founders Capital, and angel investors William Hockey, founder of Plaid, and Justin Mateen, co-founder and former CMO of Tinder.
Founded by college dropouts
Victor Cardenas and Kevin Bai, college dropouts from Stanford University and The University of Waterloo, founded Slash after identifying an early opportunity to build an online banking solution catered to young, commerce-focused entrepreneurs.
Initially, Slash provided a fintech product that allowed consumers to create shareable virtual cards to split recurring expenses. The product quickly became popular among teenage drop shippers on Discord, who flocked to Slash because its virtual cards were debit-based, available to users 13 or older, and did not limit spending based on credit history.
According to a study by Microsoft, almost two-thirds of the Gen Z population have mentioned wanting to start their own business, and 48% have multiple side hustles.
“There’s a rapidly growing group of very young entrepreneurs that’s been completely overlooked by traditional financial institutions and every other fintech company,” said Victor Cardenas, co-founder of Slash. “For people with side hustles, having a dedicated business bank account that is separate from their one is helpful. However, constantly sending money between accounts at different banks can be a hassle (and can take up to 5 business days). Our product lets you easily create and manage both a personal and business bank account in one place, making it a great choice for self-employed people.”
Helping Gen-Z with managing banking
The US company serves its customers throughout its entire business journey, from inception to scale. Its users range from teenagers under 18 starting their first side hustle to large e-commerce businesses spending millions of dollars per month.
Slash customers make money in many ways, including running paid online communities on Discord and Telegram, making and monetizing Roblox games, engaging in online arbitrage on Amazon, reselling sneakers on StockX, GOAT, and in-person conferences like GotSole, and dropshipping.
To protect the security of users’ data, Slash uses leading data encryption, firewalls, and server authentication technologies.
Users must be over the age of 13 to sign up, and those under 18 must have a legal guardian participate in the account setup.
Apart from building a banking platform, Slash aims to become a legal and financial one-stop shop to help young entrepreneurs run all aspects of their businesses.
It includes incorporation, invoicing, automated bookkeeping, and tax management. Slash’s success is a testament to the demand for specialised fintech solutions for the hustle economy, which is rapidly growing among young entrepreneurs.
“We are excited to support Slash’s mission to create a zero-friction banking experience for the hustle economy,” said Rick Yang, General Partner and Head of Consumer at NEA. “Victor, Kevin, and the team have created a unique approach to bridging the gap between personal and business banking. Their focus on serving the needs of the next generation of entrepreneurs is impressive, and we look forward to seeing their continued growth and success.”