Monday, November 29, 2021

Nas, Will Smith Help Raise $22M for Teen Banking App

Will Smith

*Nas and Will Smith have invested in a new startup named Step — which builds mobile banking services for teenagers — by leading a funding round of $22.5 million, All Hip Hop reports.

“Schools don’t teach kids about money. We want to be their first bank accounts with spending cards, but we also want to teach financial literacy and responsibility,” CEO and co-founder CJ MacDonald said in an interview.

“Banks don’t tailor to this, and we want to be a solution teaching the next generation of adults to be more responsible with money in the cashless era. It was easy with cash to go to the mall but now everyone is using their phone for Uber and more,” MacDonald added.

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The Step card is linked to the Step mobile app which enables users to send and receive money instantly, shop online or in-store as well as leverage digital wallet platforms such as Apple Pay and Google Pay.

Step has partnered with Mastercard, Stripe and Evolve to launch the all-in-one solution, and it wants to be a teen’s first spending card and first bank account. The Step card is co-branded with Mastercard, and bank accounts are securely held and FDIC insured through their sponsor bank, Evolve Bank and Trust.

Step’s first market will be in the U.S., estimated to have a little under 50 million teenagers.

In related news, Nas has announced the long-awaited follow-up to his 2002 collection, “The Lost Tapes!” is on the way. 

The hip-hop star uploaded a video of himself in a lab coat holding a broken cassette tape with “The Lost Tapes II” written across it.

“? Lost Tapes II,” he captioned the post.

As noted by Just Jared, Nas has spoken about this collection since launching his own label, Mass Appeal Records, five years ago. The original “Lost Tapes” included unreleased songs from the recording sessions for 1999′s “I Am…” and 20001′s “Stillmatic.”

Check out Nas teasing “The Lost Tapes II” below:


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? Lost Tapes II

A post shared by Nasir Jones (@nas) on

Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is a screenwriter and freelance reporter from Chicago -- currently living in Los Angeles and covering A-list entertainment for various outlets, including She has worked for: Miramax, MTV & VH1, The Jim Henson Company, Hallmark Channel, Paramount Pictures, and for iconic indie film producer Roger Corman.



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