Current is a unique Mobile app that provides parents with a set of convenient tools to help them give their children cash allowances while keeping an eye on what they spend the money on.
Most people with teenage kids understand (all too well) the dilemma of wanting to financially empower their kids, but also looking to maintain some control over how their teens spend their allowance. After all, most teens will, if left unchecked, engage in spending habits that can prove wasteful or sometimes, downright dangerous.
Due to the lack of flexible options, parents all over the world have had to come up with creative ways to give teens cash while controlling/ monitoring what they buy and how much they spend om a daily, weekly, monthly basis.
Some parents buy reloadable gift cards and make weekly deposits for their children. Others simply hand their kids their credit cards and hope nothing goes wrong.
One startup: Current, and its founder: Stuart Sopp, are looking to solve this widespread problem.
Current, a software company, which raised over $3 million last summer, lets parents give children funds on a debit card which can be funded through the parents' bank account(s).
Parents have access to a host of tools which let them do things like setting limits on spending for their kids, replenishing funds conveniently, monitoring what their children spend their money on, etc. Children even have the ability to withdraw funds via ATM. Access to cash through ATM's can also be turned on and off by the parents.
The app also has other cool features like the ability to ban spending at certain retail locations or websites. Parents can also outright prohibit purchases from whole categories of retail locations and businesses, such as hotels, gas stations, clubs, smoke lounges and many more.
Many tech observers have expressed a need for solutions for such an old problem. Sopp and his team remain committed to developing tools and features to help ease the pain parents feel in this area.
"We're unbundling the bank experience," Sopp says, "by providing services and experiences that the bank doesn't."
The company currently has a handful of employees, including Sopp, at it's NYC headquarters. Sopp himself, a U.K native, (where apps like current are very popular with over 400,000 active users) is a long-time currency trader.
He previously worked for Deutsche, Citi and Morgan Stanley, before launching Current. He won the URL, Current.com in an auction when CurrentTV, An outfit started by Al Gore let the domain expire.