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Kiwi kids 'will be better off with money thanks to Banqer boost'

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Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Banqer, the online financial literacy platform that sees New Zealand primary school students paying tax, saving for retirement and buying property, is set for another boost.

Kiwibank, which is in its third year of partnering with Banqer, has committed to funding the digital teaching tool so that 3,300 Kiwi classrooms can access the platform for free in 2019, up from 2,100 classrooms that were funded in 2018.

Banqer transforms classrooms into a virtual economy. Teachers set up a currency and facilitate real-life situations over the course of the school year to enable students to learn about growing money, debt, interest, tax, KiwiSaver and insurance. The programme is aligned with the New Zealand curriculum and designed by teachers for teachers and students.

Kiwibank’s Group Manager Marketing Mark Wilkshire said: "Financial literacy is a huge issue in New Zealand. There is a generation of Kiwi school leavers telling us they feel they have missed out on exactly this sort of real-life financial learning. There is nothing else that measures up to the impact Banqer has for Kiwi kid’s improved understanding of money.

"Analysis shows us there is a marked difference in student’s money behaviours from the start of the programme to once completed. These attitudes and positive money behaviours will benefit students for the rest of their lives," Mr Wilkshire said.

The platform has an average of 26,412 transactions per day, $302m is currently invested in KiwiSaver, 15,693 properties have been purchased and 14,494 job vacancies have been filled by Banqer students. On top of the universal income 45% are earning wages, 20% of students are making voluntary mortgage payments when they have a surplus of cash, 47% are actively looking at interest rates and moving money about to grow their wealth.

"Through Banqer more than 60,880 Kiwi kids are currently engaging in robust financial education and that number will only grow as we continue to invest in this ambitious programme. By partnering with Banqer, Kiwibank is ensuring that more kiwi kids gain confidence and learn about money in an authentic and fun way," Mr Wilkshire continued.

Co-founder and CEO of Banqer Kendall Flutey said: "It makes me extremely proud more than 60,000 Kiwi kids now have regular access to financial education but knowing with Kiwibank’s support we can educate an additional 30,000 students this coming year is even better. At that point we’re at a scale where financially capable kids will really make a difference to New Zealand’s economy into the future."

Kiwibank first teamed up with Banqer in 2016 with the goal of having 1,000 New Zealand classrooms using the platform.

Over the past two years, Banqer has grown exponentially. More than 100,000 children have used the programme and it is now in one of every four New Zealand schools. More modules have been added, a parent portal has been designed to give parents insight into what their children are learning. The organisation has also expanded into Australia.

To learn more about Banqer, or refer a teacher to sign their classroom up to a trial visit https://www.banqer.co/kiwibank.

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