Former Citi CEO Vikram Pandit Invests in FeeX
September 9, 2015
Former Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit has made a bet on Israeli fee-cutting startup FeeX. Investment by a prominent former executive of a global bank is notable for any fintech app, but perhaps especially so for FeeX. Calling itself the "Robin Hood of fees," FeeX is the unusual fintech startup that positioned itself in opposition to banks. But much like the popular stock-trading app Robinhood, it looks like an attractive acquisition target for FIs to help customers save money (from competing institutions, anyway). Investment management fees are ripe for disruption. The data and expertise used to help people manage their money are becoming more readily available from a number of providers. But a simpler way to start, rather than leaving a traditional player in favor of a startup, might be to become aware of the fees you're paying in the first place -- which is where FeeX, as well as players such as GuardVest, come in. FeeX asks consumers (or employers running retirement programs) to enter a few pieces of information about their investments to determine how much they are paying in fees. The sad truth is that most investors don't know what they pay their money managers, nor do the managers know themselves. FeeX takes on this broken market and offers information on alternative services that accomplish similar aims for far less in fees. It can then collect referral fees. FeeX has around $13 million in funding and was founded by notable entrepreneur Uri Levine, who also launched Waze, a crowdsourced traffic app whose $1.15 billion sale to Google in 2013 was an important moment for Israeli startups.