SoLo Funds Builds Innovative FinTech Business for Underserved Communities

In episode 121 of the Disruptors for GOOD podcast, I speak with Rodney williams, co-founder of SoLo Fund, on building a non-predatory FinTech startup for underserved communities in America.

About SoLo funds

SoLo Fund is a mobile loan exchange that connects lenders and borrowers with the goal of providing more affordable access to loans under $ 1,000. SoLo was created to disintermediate the predatory payday loan system. Today, SoLo is one of the fastest growing fintech companies in the country.

The SoLo story begins like every SoLo request begins: with someone in need of a helping hand. Co-founders Travis Holoway and Rodney Williams have noticed family, friends and roommates asking for financial help here and there, and they can see why. There were no fair and reliable options for small, short term loans.

They decided to create one by harnessing the power of the community. SoLo was formed in 2018 to create a viable, non-predatory option for times when life unfolds. SoLo harnesses the power of community and generosity to form an online safety net that is mutually beneficial for all of its members.

Travis and Rodney know SoLo is needed because they needed it. Our loved ones needed it. And they know SoLo makes a difference, because nearly 80% of Americans live paycheck to paycheck.

Today, SoLo is pushed to new heights, but founded on the same hope and the same mission: to build a community that enables financial autonomy for all.

Rodney has won numerous awards, including the Ad Age 40 Under 40 Award in 2012; the Ernst & Young EDGE award in 2013; Golden Lion in Cannes in 2015; Tech Entrepreneur of the Year by Black Enterprise, 2016; NAACP 2017 Inspirational Innovation List; 25 inspiring entrepreneurs under 40 by Entrepreneur Magazine 2016; Entrepreneur of the Year in Connected World Communications in the Ohio Valley region by EY in 2017; Ebony’s Power 100 in 2018 and CNBC Disruptor 50 List in 2015, 2016, 2018 and 2019.

Rodney attended West Virginia University, where he received his BBA in Finance, BA in Economics, and Masters in Integrated Marketing Communications.

Rodney also holds an MBA in Finance and Supply Chain Management from Howard University. He is a member of the 2019 Class of Henry Crown Fellows within the Aspen Global Leadership Network of the Aspen Institute.

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Grant Trahant

Grant is the founder of Causeartist, one of the world’s most influential impact business platforms. Since 2013, Causeartist has been read in over 150 countries. Grant has personally interviewed over 700 impact entrepreneurs from around the world, highlighting innovations in ethical fashion, climate change, ethical technology, impact investing and sustainable travel.