BBVA Compass becomes depository institution for SmartyPig US customers

Source: SmartyPig

BBVA Compass and SmartyPig today announced a strategic alliance where BBVA Compass will serve as depository institution to SmartyPig's customers in the United States and work with SmartyPig to expand their shared customer base.

SmartyPig is the first and only online banking application to combine Web 2.0 user applications with the viral nature of social networking platforms, making savings and spending a social experience. Through its popular consumer finance site, individuals and families can benefit from an industry-leading interest rate on their savings goals, in addition to cash back rewards of up to 12 percent when they make purchases at premium retail and travel companies.

"We are extremely pleased to announce this strategic alliance with SmartyPig as we share a common philosophy of helping consumers reach their financial goals through innovative and easy-to-understand solutions," said Manolo Sanchez, BBVA Compass president and CEO. "Joining forces with SmartyPig is a prime example of how BBVA Compass is focused on bringing innovative, leading-edge technologies to market and expanding its product set to reach a broader customer base."

SmartyPig empowers people to rid themselves of the "buy now, pay later" mindset through its platform that allows customers to save for specific financial goals like a wedding, a vacation or a flat-screen TV. A goal can be funded through monthly recurring deposits from existing checking or savings accounts or can be made with one-time contributions. Deposit amounts are set by the customer or can be calculated by using an interactive calculator to determine the amount needed each month to reach the predetermined goal. In addition, you can allow your friends and family members to help you save by sharing your goal, all while keeping your personal information safe and secure. Savings accounts associated with SmartyPig accounts will be provided by BBVA Compass and FDIC insured to the maximum level allowed by law.

"SmartyPig has led the charge in creating the next generation of banking solutions, leveraging Web 2.0 features that have the ability to motivate people to use their money more wisely," added Rick Claypoole, senior vice president and director of consumer deposits at BBVA Compass. "Customers today are concerned with reducing debt levels and an unstable economy. We share SmartyPig's vision that the time has never been better to help consumers get back to the basic idea of sensibly saving for the things they want in life."

BBVA Compass is a Sunbelt-based financial institution that operates as the U.S. arm of the BBVA Group, a global financial services group with assets of more than $765 billion and operations in more than 30 countries.

"BBVA Compass is an important choice for us as it was one of the few banks able to handle the scale of SmartyPig's considerable growth while quickly and seamlessly integrating our current customers," said Bob Weinschenk, chief executive officer, SmartyPig. "In addition, the superior global brand recognition of the BBVA name is important given our ambitions for accessing the global markets. This strategic alliance also provides SmartyPig customers access to BBVA Compass' broad array of innovative banking products and services."

SmartyPig customers will receive notice today, June 7, via e-mail allowing them to choose whether to continue their SmartyPig accounts with BBVA Compass as their new bank. Customers who continue their SmartyPig accounts will authorize the transfer of their funds on deposit at West Bank to their new BBVA Compass savings account effective as of August 1, 2010.

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