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Liberty's Stash App achieves R1.5bn in savings for South Africans

Liberty's Stash App achieves R1.5bn in savings for South Africans
05-07-24 / Tau kaVodloza

Liberty's Stash App achieves R1.5bn in savings for South Africans

Johannesburg - Liberty's digital tax-free investment app, Stash, has made great strides in encouraging a culture of savings among South Africans – a whopping R1.5 billion has been contributed using the app, thanks to its unique features that help users grow their savings in a simplified, tax-free manner.

Since its inception in 2017, the Stash app has simplified the saving and investment process and gained popularity among its over 385,000 users.

According to The Association for Savings and Investment South Africa, South Africa has a poor savings culture due to various contributing factors such as low levels of disposable income, access to formal savings products, low levels of financial literacy and financial confidence, unemployment, high interest rates, and inflation.

Glenn Grimley, Liberty's Head of Stash, agrees that barriers to saving are a reality and says the very essence of the app is aimed at addressing these. "Consumers may not save as they would like to because they may see it as something out of reach and unaffordable. However, Stash was designed to make it simple to save, no matter your financial standing. We see saving as a catalyst for financial independence, and the app makes it feasible for ordinary consumers," he adds.

Statistics from January to June 2024 show that Stash users' balances totalled R282,055,697, with the majority of users being 35 years old and under, indicating that the younger generation is taking a growing interest in savings and investment, despite socio-economic barriers.

"This is pleasing," says Grimley. "By offering a user-friendly interface, unique features, and the tax-free benefits of a Tax-Free Investment (TFI), the app encourages regular saving habits. The platform's design makes it easy for users to make small, frequent contributions, which can accumulate into significant savings over time."

Understanding the importance of fostering a culture of savings and investment for the future, Liberty introduced Stash For Kids as an extension of the Stash Tax-Free Investment which is also available on the Stash app in November 2021. This feature allows parents or guardians to open a tax-free investment account for their children, providing them with a solid financial foundation for when they turn 18 years old.

"This extended benefit is also yielding good results and has amassed over 15,000 kids accounts to date. Teaching children the value of saving from a young age is crucial," adds Grimley. "We designed the Stash For Kids component to help parents instil good financial habits for their children early on, further entrenching a savings culture and ensuring that the next generation is better equipped to achieve financial independence."

Alongside Stash, Liberty's Mind My Money programme has been instrumental in guiding individuals toward better financial decisions. Mind My Money offers a comprehensive suite of financial education resources, empowering participants with knowledge and tools to manage their finances more effectively. The programme is also rolled out in communities, worksites, and tertiary institutions.

Nomaxabiso Matjila, Liberty's Lead Specialist for Corporate Citizenship, says that the Mind My Money initiative complements the success of Stash by providing users with essential financial literacy, ensuring they not only save but also make informed decisions about their money.

By fostering a culture of financial responsibility and independence, Liberty is helping to address the underlying issues contributing to South Africa's poor savings culture, as highlighted by ASISA, and is making savings and investments more accessible and achievable for all South Africans.

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