Netwealth tackles financial literacy with new technology partner


Kendall Flutey

Key points:

  • Netwealth in partnership with a NZ tech company, is bringing a financial literacy program to Australia targeting 15,000 kids nationally over the next 12 months.
  • Known as Banqer, the program aligns with Netwealth’s desire to inspire Australians to see wealth differently and to discover a brighter future.
    Banqer is a virtual classroom economy created where kids can learn to earn, save, spend and invest their money in a safe and engaging way.
  • Netwealth is the proud supporter of a ground breaking financial literacy program which over the next 12 months will be released nationally across Australia to an estimated 15,000 students, fully funded, forever changing the financial futures of these young Australians.

A breakthrough in financial literacy in Australia, the program known as Banqer, teaches kids about money and financial concepts, giving them the chance to learn about money in a safe, engaging and fun way.

According to Netwealth Joint Managing Director, Matt Heine, supporting the program is an excellent way for Netwealth to extend its wealth philosophy to Australian kids.

“Netwealth was created to provide investors and wealth professionals with a better way to invest, protect and manage their current and future wealth,” he said. “We seek to enable, educate and inspire people to see wealth differently and to discover a brighter future. Banqer is a great opportunity for us to extend this purpose supporting a program that starts kids on this journey.”

More than 30,000 students from 450 schools in New Zealand currently use Banqer, as well as a handful of teachers in the United Kingdom, United States, Canada and South Africa. Banqer is currently being used by 28 schools in Australia, with plans to take it to the US this year.

“We all want a brighter future for our kids, and that means making sure programs like Banqer get into our schools so kids can learn in a practical way, life-long concepts about money,” said Heine. “We are very proud to have brought this program to Australian kids.”

Launched in New Zealand in 2015 and the brainchild of accountant turned developer and Banqer CEO Miss Kendall Flutey, kids can influence their financial environment by doing classroom jobs to earn cash or offering services to other children. Any virtual money that they earn from rewards for good behaviour or classroom jobs, they can choose to save, spend or invest in houses in a virtual real estate market.

Teachers can use the program’s reward system to help motivate kids, encouraging development and confidence. Kids learn valuable life skills by managing the rental of their desks and paying for class privileges. Teachers can also trigger virtual earthquakes or sudden interest rate rises to emphasise the benefits of insurance and to demonstrate the importance of savings relative to debt.

“Banqer helps kids get curious, creative, and ultimately, confident with money,” said Flutey. “It has been embraced by kids and teachers, but is also transcending geographical borders as we all start to understand financial literacy is a global challenge.”

Attending the launch event in Sydney, the Chairman of the Australian Government’s Financial Literacy Board, Mr Paul Clitheroe said the obvious starting point for financial literacy was with kids. “You have to start early with good habits in life, and money is no different,” he said. “To get the full benefits of strategies such as compounding, it is about the long-term and that means getting started young.”

Kids in Year 1 to Year 5 learn money management and personal finance topics such as income, savings and interest while Years 6 and 7 learn about topics such as mortgages, rent, paying tax, paying excesses on insurance claims.

The recent Young Australian Survey by Roy Morgan Research which surveyed more than 2,500 Australian kids aged 6-13 years found 76% of them saved money. Of this group who did save money, the highest proportion (25%) had saved between $1-$49. Meanwhile, most kids surveyed spend their money on toys (44.7%), with a close second saving it in a bank (43.6%). Buying snacks and drinks came in at number three at 29.3%.

“All kids deserve a great start to life and being financially literate, being confident and curious, is a huge step towards this goal,” said Heine. “We are very excited by the future we are working with Banqer to create.”


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