Aeldra Financial, Inc. ("Aeldra" or "the Company") is a Silicon Valley based corporation providing access to banking and investment services in partnership with regulated U.S. financial institutions. The Company was incorporated in 2019 and has thousands of customers from the U.S. and overseas, primarily India. The brand name “Aeldra” (pronounced “Eldra”) means Noble in old English. It was chosen to reflect the values of integrity, trust and customer advocacy that the Company adheres to.
Blue Ridge Bank, N.A. (“Blue Ridge”) is Aeldra’s banking partner. Blue Ridge is a U.S. bank headquartered in Virginia, and founded in 1893. The Blue Ridge – Aeldra partnership was established in 2020 with a common mission to provide a wide range of financial services with an emphasis on quality, ethics, and superb customer relations. Blue Ridge is a National Bank regulated by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), an independent bureau within the United States Department of the Treasury. Blue Ridge Website Aeldra has a partnership with Mastercard to provide a Global Debit Card linked to the account with special benefits relevant for overseas citizens and international travelers.
Aeldra serves thousands of customers in the U.S. and India with a U.S. Bank Account and a Mastercard Debit Card*. In line with the Company’s focus on customer advocacy, the Aeldra account is free. Aeldra does not charge customers any fees. There are no monthly fees, account maintenance fees or transaction fees. As an example of the value to customers, unlike other U.S. banks that charge up to $35 for an international wire credit, Aeldra has zero fees for international wires. The Aeldra mobile App has been inspired by the Apple mantra “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication”. The user experience and money movement functionality are designed to be extremely intuitive and easy to use even by customers not familiar with the U.S. banking system. The Aeldra App’s minimalist design hides the immense complexity in enabling cross-border banking, with numerous integrations, latest technologies and proprietary machine learning algorithms under the cover.
*Due to Mastercard constraints in India, only customers with a U.S. residential address will be issued a Debit Card.
Unique Business Model
Aeldra’s business model is unique - the Company does not charge customers anything. The Aeldra account is free with no minimum balance requirement. Aeldra’s primary sources of revenue are interest on deposits and debit card interchange fees paid by retailers.
Aeldra is soon launching a trading platform under the Elder Tree brand to provide access to U.S. stocks, ETFs and bonds to all Aeldra customers, with zero commission trading, curated portfolios and access to exclusive investment opportunities. It is also expanding its product offerings to include a credit card and a mortgage (home loan) which do not required U.S. credit history or FICO score.
Similarly, Aeldra is revolutionizing customer service to be easy to access at any time, pleasant to experience, consultative to provide solutions, and focused on helping the customer. The customer services has been branded Concierge so that the Aeldra customer service managers think of themselves as resources to help the customers. It is also available 24X7 from anywhere in the world.
The Company has a unique innovation called Secure Messaging, where customers can send a private and secure message to the Concierge right from the App if they do not want to spend time calling.
Another distinctive feature is AeldraPay, a free Peer-to-peer transfer, that offers a one-click way of sending funds real-time. This can be used as an alternative to cash to give friends or family a gift, split bills or rent, or borrow and repay friends for short-term needs.
Aeldra’s three Founders graduated from the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore in 1999, and have worked across four continents. They have been senior executives in global organizations like McKinsey, Goldman Sachs, Accenture, Infosys and Cargill.
Aeldra’s CEO, Sukeert Shanker, has led the launch of two new digital banks in the last 6 years, including Marcus by Goldman Sachs. Prior to setting up Aeldra, Mr. Shanker was Chief Operating Officer of the Digital Bank of East West Bancorp, Inc., a $45 Billion (Rs. 330,000 Crores) U.S. bank based in Los Angeles and listed on NASDAQ. Anil Kumar N.S., Aeldra’s India M.D., was part of the founding team at UIDAI. The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) is a statutory authority established by the Government of India to issue Unique Identification numbers (UID), named "Aadhaar", to all residents of India.
Aeldra's Mission is to provide customers banking that they can trust. The Founders have experienced the challenges that customers face in cross-border banking first-hand. They are driven by the core belief that customers should not have to jump through hoops or pay fees to get access to banking services.
Given the complexity of banking regulations within the U.S. and in overseas markets like India, Mr. Shanker and Mr. Kumar’s deep expertise in regulatory and compliance aspects of banking is the primary reason Aeldra could create its unique business model.
Sukeert Shanker CEO
Venkat Gopalakrishna Coo
Anil Kumar N.S. M.D.India
FDIC-INSURED U.S. BANK ACCOUNT
All Aeldra customers’ funds, i.e. all funds that customers keep in their Aeldra account, are held by Blue Ridge, which is a Member of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, a U.S. Government entity. The FDIC – short for Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation – is an independent agency of the United States government that protects against the loss of insured deposits if an FDIC-insured bank fails. It is backed by the full faith and credit of the United States government. Since the FDIC began in 1934, no depositor has ever lost a penny of FDIC insured funds. All funds in the Aeldra account are insured up to $250,000 per depositor through Blue Ridge. Blue Ridge FDIC Insurance Certification
Blue Ridge Bankshares Inc., the holding company of Blue Ridge Bank, N.A., is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) American.
Blue Ridge disclosed the partnership with Aeldra in their annual 10-K Securities and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing for FY 2020: "The Company’s efforts to partner with fintech providers started gaining critical mass in 2020. The fintech business ended the year with four active partnerships, including Upgrade, Meritize, Flexible Finance, and Kashable, and six emerging partnerships for 2021 including Jaris, BNK.DEV/Ratchet, Aeldra, Grow Credit, MentorWorks, and Unit. Fintech relationships have resulted in approximately $47.0 million in deposits on the Company’s balance sheet at December 31, 2020."
Aeldra believes in Privacy and Info Security above all else, given the importance of cross-border banking in people’s lives. Aeldra uses the latest technology and documented processes & procedures to ensure that customers’ data is safe at all times. A guiding principle for the company is that the customer’s data belongs to the customer. All passport scans, personal information, and transaction information is completely secure and confidential. Aeldra does not provide or sell customers’ data to any third party, and never will.
Another unique element of Aeldra’s business model is the relationship with customers – Aeldra believes in co-creating the cross-border banking experience with customers to ensure that their needs are met. The Aeldra leadership team is in constant touch with customers to learn what functionality can be added or improved, and incorporate customer suggestions with great urgency. The Company believes that this unique culture and Agile approach will be critical to the success of the company in fulfilling its vision to be the first truly global consumer bank serving citizens everywhere who need cross-border banking.
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*Banking services provided by Blue Ridge Bank, National Association, Member FDIC. The FDIC – short for Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation – is an independent agency of the United States government that protects against the loss of insured deposits if an FDIC insured bank fails. It is backed by the full faith and credit of the United States government. Since the FDIC began in 1934, no depositor has ever lost a penny of FDIC insured funds. FDIC insurance covers funds in deposit accounts up to $250,000 per depositor.
**The Aeldra Mastercard Debit Card is issued by Blue Ridge Bank, N.A. pursuant to a license from Mastercard Inc. and may be used everywhere Mastercard debit cards are accepted. Per Mastercard constraints in India, Aeldra debit cards will only be automatically issued to customers with a U.S. residential address upon account opening. Per Mastercard constraints in India, customers that did not have a U.S. address at the time of opening the Aeldra Account need to be physically in the U.S. before a Debit Card can be issued. You will need to call our Concierge and request a card. You may be asked to submit documents including but not limited to a valid U.S. visa, or a U.S. address proof, or a Notarized declaration to prove that you are physically in the U.S. ATM: Out-of-Network cash withdrawal fees apply. Third-party and cash deposit fees may apply.
^APY is variable and accurate as of 2/20/2021. Rates may be changed from time to time without notice.