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Posted February 2, 2022 in Uncategorized

Central Payments Kicks Off 2022 with Six Partner Launches

Mix of Fintech Startups and Established Companies Validates the Versatility and Momentum of the Open*CP Fintech API Marketplace.

SIOUX FALLS, SD – (February 2, 2022) – Central Payments, the country’s fastest growing prepaid card issuer*, announces the market launch of financial technology products for six partners leveraging its’ award-winning Open*CP Fintech API Marketplace. Companies coming to market include Kinly (formally First Boulevard), Wellthi, Soon, DraftFuel, Fourth and Tapcheck.

“We developed Open*CP because technology, charter, and choice together are unique and compelling characteristics for banking-as-a-service,” said Trent Sorbe, President and Founder of Central Payments. “I cannot think of a better way to build off our momentum from 2021 than to add these six companies to the Open*CP partner portfolio. These six product launches, plus new relationships we’ll announce in the coming weeks, prove that our ’Real Banking-as-a-Service’ approach works for both early-stage fintechs and established companies embedding financial products in other core offerings.”

Sorbe adds, “I’m particularly pleased to bring the first group of Falls Fintech alumni to market, delivering on our promise to accelerate the market readiness of the country’s most promising fintech companies.” Kinly, Wellthi, Soon and DraftFuel are the first to reach market after completing Falls Fintech, the accelerator program created by Central Payments to bridge the fintech-bank partnership gap. As part of their Falls Fintech experience, all four companies integrated with Open*CP to accelerate their speed to market.

Kinly is a digitally native fintech committed to improving the financial livelihood of Black America with a new full-scale digital banking app and debit card, issued by Central Payments’ parent Central Bank of Kansas City (CBKC). “Completion of our integration with Central Payments and its Open*CP platform is a major milestone for Kinly, bringing the company closer to its mission of helping to build generational wealth for Black America,” said Kinly Founder and CEO Donald Hawkins, who served as Entrepreneur-in-Residence during cohort two of Falls Fintech. “Beyond the advantages of their ‘REAL’ bank-as-a-service technology, Central’s reputation as a CDFI demonstrates our companies’ shared vision to serve underbanked populations.”

Wellthi is a B2B2C embedded social finance software that connects banks and credit unions of all sizes to help financial institutions make saving, spending, and fundraising as a group safe, simple, and transparent for customers. Soon is an automated wealth management platform that helps people from all financial backgrounds and investing experience to grow their wealth, as they spend with a Soon Visa Debit Card. DraftFuel is a gaming app that allows you to enjoy responsible gaming by automating the collection of discretionary funds to allocate to your sportsbook, online casino, and daily fantasy sports accounts without breaking the bank.

In addition to the Falls Fintech alumni, Open*CP remains the platform of choice for embedded finance solutions, as two more companies launch financial service products. Sorbe adds: “Our partnerships with Fourth and Tapcheck reflect our broader view that the two-week pay period is a relic.” Fourth Enterprises, a leading provider of workforce and inventory solutions for the restaurant, hospitality and retail industries, is embedding an early wage access solution called Fuego On-Demand Pay to its existing time management and payroll system. “As the industry continues to face uncertainties as a result of the labor shortage, our new Fuego On-Demand Pay solution, which is supplemented with the Fuego prepaid card powered by Central Payments, provides our partners with the tools needed to attract, hire and retain valuable talent,” said Clinton Anderson, CEO of Fourth.

Open*CP is also enabling Tapcheck’s embedded finance solution. The financial wellness benefit allows employees to access their earnings before payday. Available at no cost to employers, Tapcheck uses an intuitive mobile app to give workers greater control over their finances, which reduces their stress at home and increases their productivity at work. And thanks to Tapcheck’s seamless integration with existing payroll programs, employers who incorporate on-demand earnings into their employee benefits packages find it to be a cost-effective way to distinguish their company from competitors, reduce turnover rates, and provide the financial flexibility that employees want.

About Central Payments
Central Payments is the payments subsidiary of Central Bank of Kansas City and provides payments technology and issuing solutions for fintechs and embedded finance. The company’s Open*CP Fintech API MarketplaceSM is one of the only true bank-as-a-service payments platforms with issuing capability embedded. Open*CP’s vertical integration and it’s native-to-the-cloud technology are the drivers responsible for Central Payments’ rise to the fastest growing prepaid card issuer since 2015.* The company also operates Falls Fintech, its award-winning startup fintech accelerator and produces Fintech Brews & News, a podcast devoted to helping bridge the gap between banking, startups, and the entire fintech industry. Visit Central-Payments.com & FallsFintech.com for more information.
* Source: The Nilson Report, 2015 to present.

About Falls Fintech
Falls Fintech is a custom, 12-week program designed to accelerate market readiness for early-stage financial technology startups. The high-intensity curriculum is delivered by a distinguished group of payments, technology, and banking professionals. At the conclusion of Falls Fintech, successful companies will have completed all the necessary steps to come to market with a bank partnership and access to the payments ecosystem through Central Payments and its Open*CP platform.