Jumiya, a Bank Account that Rewards Healthy Living

December 13, 2012

Put down that donut! Your bank account is watching.

Meet Jumiya, a new venture seeking funding that is billed as “the [bank] account that improves as you do.” Jumiya’s promotional video (below) states that “health and finance are intimately linked.” Uh oh.

Jumiya will reward members for checking into the gym on Foursquare, and lower credit card interest rates when members run 10 miles.

When members try to use their Jumiya-branded cards to buy donuts, it shocks them.

Ok, that last part isn’t true.

According to the video:

Research has shown that consumers who exercise regularly, eat well, and rarely drink or smoke are more likely to pay bills on time and save monthly. Jumiya incentivizes this behavior by rewarding members who take on healthy practices with better rates, and, using Big Data and concepts from the Quantified Self movement, help financial institutions provide a more holistic approach to member service.

The Quantified Self movement uses technology and data to monitor the body in terms of food eaten, exercise performed, and even mood states. It is also known as “self-tracking” and even “body-hacking,” according to its Wikipedia entry. The movement is related to transhumanism, the idea that humans can use scientific and technological breakthroughs to overcome previous limitations, such as running speed and the standard human lifespan.

Jumiya’s pitch to FI’s is put this way:

Jumiya gives financial institutions an innovative product that will a) draw in more customers [and] allow for more loans to be made to current customers, help customers to maintain and improve their health, thereby increasing their lifetime value for the FI and serving the broader community. Jumiya takes a cut of the value of new customers and new loans on the part of the financial institutions and a cut of the value of the financial rewards given to consumers. Potential expansion of value proposition to employers/insurance companies, who gain value if their employees/customers are healthier.

Jumiya is a project of Singularity University, a Silicon Valley-based, non-profit learning institution that is not an accredited university, but offers supplemental programs in fields such as Future Studies, Biotechnology and Bioinformatics, and Robotics. The Future Studies program is headed by prominent “futurist” Ray Kurzweil, who popularized the concept of the technological singularity, which gives the university its name. (If you don’t know what the Singularity is, you’ve got some reading to do.)

As befits a project launched by futurists and transhumanists, Jumiya’s goals are not modest: “It’s time again to re-imagine what financial institutions can do for society.”

Jumiya was started by Philipp Kallerhoff and Eli Mohamed, both of whom have strong technological and business backgrounds — and they’re healthier than you are.

Watch the Jumiya informational video below.

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One Response to Jumiya, a Bank Account that Rewards Healthy Living

  1. Can Big Data Go Small? « Heart of the Matter on December 14, 2012 at 2:11 pm

    [...] As someone that strives to live a healthy lifestyle, I love this unique banking idea. [...]

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