A Chat with Youssef Darwich, Co-Founder and CEO at Family Finance App: Nosso

Nosso’s beta launch was in March 2021, but we officially launched to market in 2022 with a mission to make financial planning work for the whole family. Our products help families come together to invest for the future of the children they love.

Over an 18-year period, individuals who invite their partner to manage their children’s investment will receive £1,720 more from family and friends than those who go it alone.

So, to encourage this, we created investment accounts that can be set up and managed by both parents with ease, while also allowing extended family to contribute directly in a simple but efficient way.

Our app-first service makes it easy for parents to create a goal for their child’s future and start investing towards it, as well as enabling extended family members and friends to manage all their gifting to grandchildren, godchildren, nieces or nephews in one place. We offer a few different financial products – from the well-known, like the Junior Stocks & Shares ISA, to the more niche, like the Bare Trust.

We also enable people to leave messages and photos with their investment. This way, when a child accesses their account later in life, they can see how much those around them care, even if they’re no longer there to say it themselves.

But this is just the start for Nosso. Our long term goal is to help families of all shapes and sizes to plan for their long term goals. We want to help people take advantage of benefits they may not know about, such as tax-efficiently transferring wealth between one another, all without having to pay the thousands of pounds that traditional advisers would normally charge.

How did you come up with the idea for the company? 

Nosso was born from a realisation that financial services in the UK don’t work for the modern family. Now, old established family roles and responsibilities are fluid between mums, dads and extended family members. But for too long, children’s investment accounts have been designed for one parent to manage, and this doesn’t chime with the modern world. For example, nearly two-thirds (63%) of Nosso’s users are women, bucking the stereotype that it’s the man who manages the family’s finances.

When my wife and I had our first child, we started experiencing this pain first hand. At around the same time I met my fellow co-founder, Sigurjon, who shared a similar view to me on how finance should work families. In creating Nosso, we both set out to rebuild the family finance industry once and for all with the unique use cases of modern families in mind.

I think this laser focus on families is what makes Nosso unique as it allows us to build experiences that others don’t or maybe even couldn’t. For example, we were the first in the market to create simple contribution links that can be shared with extended family to encourage them to swap presents for investments when gifting. We’ve also built features that allow family members to take the initiative and contribute towards a child’s future before a Junior ISA is even created – something that before wasn’t possible. And finally, by understanding what the modern family truly looks like, we’ve seen a lot of co-parents use our product to both have visibility and control over their children’s futures despite no longer being together.

How has the company evolved over the last couple of years?

When we first launched our beta in March 2021 our product was simple. It was a Junior ISA that two parents could manage together. And while that’s still at the heart of what we do, we’ve since then built out a number of new ways for parents and families to come together.

We recently opened our Bare Trust account, which makes it easier for anyone to directly open a trust and start investing for a loved one in under 10 minutes, regardless of whether they are a parent, extended family member or friend.

We’ve also improved the way that family members can gift money to Junior ISAs – removing certain barriers that existed before whilst also making the experience more personal through cards, memories and messages.

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

Today we help parents invest for their children’s goals and futures together. Looking ahead, we want to play a key role in challenging the single user approach we have to investing and saving in the UK, and helping parents (or wider family) with shared goals to invest for them together in the most efficient ways.

This means a product where as a household you can track all your savings, investments & pensions, a product where regardless of who the “owner” is, you can give permission to someone else to contribute to it or invest on your behalf – a partner, for example. Ultimately, we are building a product that understands your most important goals and can tell you how best to reach them based on the tax breaks available to you.

Many people find investing daunting, and many more don’t even know about the possible benefits available to them if they stopped thinking about their wealth as individuals and started looking at it from a ‘household’ perspective. Through our services, we want to change this and redefine what it means to invest for your family.