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Hello Product Hunt! I am really excited to hunt the newest Expa New York Company with you today. Learning in public is a great part of posting here and I am hoping to get into some great questions and get feedback as we launch our Slack integration today. The Current team has built an incredibly powerful and versatile payments platform that makes it easy to pay and transact as easy as sending a message to a friend or colleague in Slack. The team is also exploring what the intersection of messaging and payments really means and the role of Current in this space. Using Current in Slack teams for the past few months has been helpful to pay people back quickly. Building on top of other ecosystems makes sense over time - and today we are focused on Slack. Please let us know what you think, and if you use Slack it would be great to get feedback.
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Hey Eric, Thanks for hunting Current. We have created Current because we believe sending money should be as easy as sending a message and should be accessible from the platform you are using. Current’s first integration is with Slack so anyone can use the platform to pay their colleagues - for a work lunch, or a coffee, or a job well done. We are available on iOS and on the web – giving you a few different ways on day one to send money to friends, family and coworkers, simply, instantly and for free. We have a great mix of finance, tech and product people working out of NYC to bring this exciting next-generation payment platform to you. Hope you check it out and give us feedback, let me know if you have any questions.
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@soppstu is this better than Venmo simply because it's in Slack? Who do you see as your target customer cohort for this?
@soppstu will this link up to expenses so they are tracked somewhere too? What about entering the salary space? Could be beneficial for remote companies :) What were some of the biggest challenges to overcome with building Current?
@chrismessina Great questions Chris, Slack is our first integration with several coming out soon, we are different to Venmo, by building an API for money and hope to one day connect to them also. The target cohort is tech savvy Americans who pay their colleagues back at work for coffee, lunches, celebrate team wins.
@bentossell Hi Ben, great question too, yes we are looking at payroll and expenses right now to cater for distributed teams and hope to one day be global so we can all work on a beach somewhere. Biggest challenges, have been legal and compliance which is for good reason and tends to make long lead times in financial products.
@chrismessina Venmo killed their API and has messed around devs a lot.
Congrats on the launch - I've been hearing a lot about Current and it is amazing to see it live! First, the design of the landing page and product is on-point 🎉 💯 🙌🏼 Getting to a launch is no easy feat, you should be proud that you've made it this far! 1) What do you imagine the top use cases for in-Slack payments are? One of our investors has ChangeTip integrated within their portfolio company Slack channel and it has been interesting to see how it is used. So far it has been mostly for esoteric side bets. Do you think co-workers will repay each other for meals, drinks? Makes sense to abstract away Abacus and other expensing tools into the main communication workflow of Slack. 2) The onboarding process seems fairly lengthy, is there a reason SSN + photo ID is required for Current vs Square Cash/Venmo that just uses Jumio to scan cards and gets users started? 3) I'm curious why the CTA on the landing wasn't directly to mobile. Social payments are largely driven by mobile (within my demographic anyway), just curious on the product decision. I'm now awaiting approvals from Current on my photo ID and am on the Safari mobile web flow. From Current's perspective, an onboarded user with a credit card linkage is the completed flow and I'm in a holding period where I could have synced my card but that option isn't available. Also, I'd much rather a push notification when I'm ready to go, than an email. And certainly push notifications allows for two options for the app developer - you can optimize different re-engagement flows with both email and push as your arsenal. With the current flow, you only have email. Anyway, just my rather cringe-happy product review. Love what you guys are doing, would love to grab coffee at some point!
@realsimonburns Thank you for the kind words Simon, you're right it's not easy esp in this space. 1) By exchanging money via Slack at work, you don't need to exchange cell numbers for example, we have a few things coming that will make it easier to celebrate teams wins, appreciate a star employee publically and also building towards paying between companies and distributed teams which we think the future will be. 2) Nice spot, since 2008 bank services like loans, brokerage, advising have been unbundled and today is a first step in building towards a new way to access those services in one place. It will take few more integrations and some first class engineering but we want to be the US first digitally native marketplace bank so we have to start with a heavy KYC. 3) Believe it or not but we weren't sure if our mobile offering was going to live (is is here We are mobile first and agree this experience will be our flagship so I apologize for the confusion there. We have steered away from adding credit cards in the short term and there will be more on that in the near future. This is just where we are beginning and we have a lot on our roadmap plus ready to learn in public. Lets grab a coffee soon.
@soppstu Great responses! Got all set up on the mobile app. Clearly there is a bigger vision you're going for, seems super exciting. I'll reach out to put a coffee on the books :)
Hello, I was instantly inspired by your product to ideate an unique use case you may wish to consider!.. Consider approaching existing online publication companies with an opportunity to create a Slack group.. For their writing teams creating an instant writing, review, revision, payment platform.. For optimal business transactions! With the help of your payment Slackbot.. Examples: Yahoo News, Online Magazines, Professional Blogs, etc.. I thought of this because Slack is a platform to exchange written work + media which are the constituent factors of online publication companies products (articles.. which they share on Twitter!).. I hope this was beneficial for you to read! Thanks, Jaswinder Brar.
@jay_bee12345 Absolutely, we are interested in this space too! Our infrastructure is perfect to enable these types of transactions too. Look out for more developments soon, esp in the business account area. Thanks for reaching out and happy to talk about the potential!
@soppstu In reference to.. Writing Rates for Magazine and Trade Journals My pay rate for alive, which is a health magazine I write for, is fifty cents a word. I’ve been writing for them since 2009. I don’t query them anymore. The editors send me three article assignments a year, usually in the spring. So, remember that these freelance writing pay rates are dependent on many factors – some of which may not be in your control! Article feature writing: $40-$122 per hour, or $.20-30 per word Reprint articles: $20-$1,500 per project, or $.10-1.50 per word Magazine column: $75-$2,500 per project, or $.37-2.50 per word Ghostwriting articles: $30-$200 per hour, or $.60-10 per word Arts review: $60-$95 per hour, or $.08-1.20 per word Book reviews: $25-$900 per project, or $.15-1.50 per word Rewriting: $20-125 per hour, or $50 per page Content editing: $25-125 per hour, or $.06-.16 per word Reading the Writer’s Market books is a good way to get an accurate feel for current pay rates for freelance writers. Writing Rates for Newspapers These writing jobs and rates are compiled from voluntary surveys from members of numerous professional writers’ and editors’ associations and specialty groups. Article feature writing: $40-$79 per hour, or .10-$1.60 per word Local column: .38-$1 per word; $25-$600 per project Self-syndicated column: $4-$35 per insertion Investigative Reporting: $2,250-$10,000 per grant Proofreading: $15-$45 per hour Arts review: $30-$69 per hour, or $.06-.60 per word Book reviews: $45-$69 per hour, or $.25-.60 per word Obituary copy: $35-$225 per project
P2P payments is a notoriously horrible business. Even the big winner, Venmo, didn't create a lot of value for the investors/founders. Why go after this market at all? This may seem like a negative comment but just to be clear - I'm excited about what you're doing and look forward to your answers!
@tommyrva It is too! But its the foundation for any next generation of payment network like us. We have ambitions to be the first US based digitally native marketplace bank (its a mouthfull) by being a single tool that will offer loans, advising, trading, things that banks expect you to come to them to get. But right now we are focussed on getting out to where people are native and that's social and messenger platforms to enable conversational commerce, hence our little launch. Not negative at all and our story and roadmap is very different to some incumbents already out there. Happy to chat more.
@soppstu I think it's very exciting! Looking forward to trying out the Slack integration, smart first step.
@soppstu thoughts on Simple?