HyperJar Interview: Using Tech to Avoid Debt

Imagine glass jars lined up on a kitchen table.  Each has money inside, and is labelled something like ‘food’, ‘clothes’ or ‘treats’. HyperJar lets you divide your money like this, according to how want to spend it.

People have been organising their money like this for 100s of years, but we’ve digitised it and added three bits of high-tech magic:

1) You can spend directly from any Jar, so it’s like linking a card directly to your budget;

2) You can share any Jar with other people (up to 100) to plan and spend together;

3) You can allocate money to our partners on the app ahead of spending, and get a 4.8% Annual Growth Rate on every penny.

HyperJar - Getting started

How did HyperJar start?


Founder Mat Megens came up with the idea for HyperJar because he was always taught how to avoid debt, but not how to spend. He remembers having a ‘basketball jar’ when he was younger to save up for a hoop and backboard, so when he came up with the idea for HyperJar and wanted a simple way for people to manage their money, the Jar seemed the obvious symbol.



How has the need for HyperJar evolved during the pandemic?


Sustainable spending

Spending money is easy, managing money is hard. Boring. Difficult. You name it. There’s been plenty of debt-based innovation to make spending frictionless, but precious little to help people be better at spending. Until now.

In a pandemic, one thing is certain – that nothing is certain. Products that give consumers control over where their money goes and make budgeting motivating are more relevant. We believe this more sustainable approach to spending is essential.


Save where you shop

Interest rates are running at close to zero and the threat of negative rates is looming, leaving millions of us looking for ways protect our cash. HyperJar’s model means retailers can step in to help where the banks can’t. Our customers get a 4.8% annual growth rate by paying in advance to businesses they want to use anyway. It’s a way to ‘save where you shop’.


A WhatsApp for money

Shared Jars for shared shopping – like a hassle-free joint account crossed with a WhatsApp group for money, where you can spend and leave messages with friends & family.  During lockdown, this feature has come into its own for those who are shielding. They create a Jar, invite a friend to share and add money for their shopping.

The friend or neighbor, then just links their own HyperJar card to the Jar to spend from it directly at the shop. All sharers see who has paid in and who has spent, so there’s a permanent ledger of all transactions. And a message function means sharers can leave notes for each other inside the Jar – from shopping lists to thankyous.


What can we hope to see from HyperJar in the future?


More of us shop more locally as a result of the pandemic. While our current partners are some of the biggest brands in the UK, like Shell, Virgin Wines and Dyson, soon we’ll be expanding to local businesses. HyperJar customers will be able to lock-in spending with them in return for a growth rate, as they do with our national partners, or receive offers.

The SMEs get an instant digital tool for communicating with their shoppers, and HyperJar customers get to demonstrate their commitment to local businesses.


Interview with Natalie Malevsky, Chief Growth Officer at HyperJar