Money Dashboard, which can be thought of as a Mint.com for the UK, gets its consumer launch today.
Running in some form of beta since December 2009, the startup, which is funded to the tune of £2m, provides an online service for consumers to manage their finances via a dashboard that aggregates data – balances and transactions – from online bank accounts and credit cards etc. It’s powered by Yodlee, as was Money Dashboard’s, ultimately unsuccessful, competitor Kublax.
Money Dashboard’s features include the ability to track and categorise spending, and set budgets, along with email alerts to warn users if they exceed their set budget or are about go into overdraft. And in future, says the company, it will also be possible to alert users to suspicious transactions on their accounts.
Talking up the market opportunity along the lines of ‘never let a good recession go to waste’, Money Dashboard’s founder and CEO Gavin Littlejohn makes reference to the fragility of the economy and the UK government’s “austerity measures”.
In a canned statement, he says: “Money Dashboard is a product that will take a lot [of] the fear and hassle out of managing on a tighter budget. Since we are independent of banks and building societies, our priority is always the consumer and helping them to make the most of their finances.”
Those big bad banks.
Although it’s true that the User Experience of online banking and other web-based financial products could certainly do with being dragged into the 21st Century.
To date, 10,000 users have taken part in Money Dashboard’s public beta and, interestingly, the service will remain free now that it’s fully open. The revenue model is instead to try to up-sell financial products via its “Ways to Save” pages from which the startup will get a kick back from any sales.
As noted, Money Dashboard has raised £2 million of funding from business angels and from investment firm Par Equity. The company says more funding will be soon “injected” primarily to up its marketing arsenal, which makes sense now that the product has finally fully launched.