Payments apps have bee exploding in popularity in recent months, thanks to Apple Pay, but an app by the name of Glassjar is doing something a bit different. Founded by a couple of New Zealanders and aimed at the American market, this app focuses specifically on shared payments, meaning a payments that are divided amongst a group, and aims to make this process far easier and more organized.
This isn’t George Smith’s first startup, but it’s his biggest venture to date – and he’s doing it half the world away from home. Smith, who’s from Wellington in New Zealand, just launched Glassjar, an app aimed at making group payments easier in the US. The idea for this first formed in 2012 back in New Zealand when Smith and Glassjar co-founder Matt Galloway met. That first concept of group payments was a bit different from today’s app because it was shaped by how things are done in New Zealand. Over there, young people in a shared house set up a joint bank account with their roommates in order to split and pay the utilities bills and any other shared expenses – a complex and inflexible system that Smith himself used until quite recently while a student at the University of Canterbury in Christchurch. The first blueprint was to create a web app for tracking expenses in a shared house’s joint bank account.