A bank that builds financial health banner


September 17, 2019

Varo makes premium financial services available to everyone

Brandon Huang

Updated on October 29, 2019

Varo is an online mobile banking company committed to improving lives by making premium financial services available to everyone.

Colin Walsh started the company in 2015 on the principle that a bank could put customers’ interests first and still be profitable. The app launched in July 2017 on iOS, and since then, Varo has seen $600 million come through the platform—including more than $50 million in savings.

In August 2019, Varo took the next step: the company now offers no-fee overdraft protection on overdrafts of up to $50 for users who meet certain eligibility requirements. $50 may not sound like much, but it can make all the difference to someone struggling with financial health.

"More than half of Americans are cash-strapped,” said Colin Walsh, CEO of Varo. “I believe that banks have an obligation to help people get ahead financially. At the very least, they shouldn’t make things worse by charging fees and being opaque."

For Varo to continue to live into its mission and provide superior service, they needed a way for users to seamlessly link their external bank accounts to Varo—as well as a way for users to link their Varo accounts to outside apps and institutions. When a previous vendor wasn’t up to the job, Varo turned to Plaid.