Lili, a banking app for freelancers, just rolled out a subscription-based service designed to help self-employed people better handle the business side of their businesses.
Lili, founded in 2018, says it introduced Lili Pro in large part due to the millions of U.S. workers who are quitting their jobs and entering the freelance ranks. Features of the $4.99-a-month Lili Pro service include:
- Unlimited invoicing.
- Free overdraft protection up to $200.
- Direct deposit.
- Savings with a 1% interest rate.
- Visa debit card with cashback rewards.
- Fee-free access to more than 38,000 ATMs.
- Expense categorization.
- Automatic set-asides of a share of income for tax payments.
- Automatically generated quarterly expense reports.
The app is available for iOS and Android devices.
Lili’s investors include Group 11, Foundation Capital, AltaIR Capital, Primary Venture Partners, Torch Capital and Zeev Ventures. Banking services are provided by Choice Financial Group.
“Lili is currently the only fintech product designed to address the needs of this rapidly growing sector of entrepreneurs,” Dovi Frances, founder partner of Group 11, said in May. “We anticipate the freelancer economy will continue to grow robustly even beyond the pandemic tailwinds. Lili is poised to see exponential growth by continuing to offer this demographic effective and intuitive tools to manage a previously complex side of doing business.”
The release of Lili Pro comes on the heels of the New York City-based fintech startup — which has an office in Israel — raising a $55 million Series B round in May, hitting 200,000 users and being named the exclusive banking partner of the Freelancers Union. To date, Lili has collected $80 million in funding.
“The new economy is here. And the new economy is freelance,” Lilac Bar David, CEO of Lili, said in a news release. “Lili is solving the financial burdens plaguing the next generation of freelancers who play such an integral role in our economy. We need to better equip this group with the tools to succeed so they can worry less about financial challenges and continue pursuing their passions.”
In 2020, an estimated 59 million Americans reported they had freelanced over the past year, representing 36% of the nation’s workforce. Research shows freelancers contributed $1.2 trillion to the U.S. economy in earnings last year. The number of U.S. freelancers is projected to surpass 90.1 million by 2028.
Aside from Lili, neobanks catering to the U.S. freelance marketplace include Joust (now owned by ZenBusiness), Lance and NorthOne.
“As the freelance economy expands — the sector experienced a 700% increase in transactional volume since the beginning of the pandemic, according to a report from Upwork — a growing number of fintechs are targeting gig workers and small-business owners with tailored banking services,” Banking Dive reported in May.