Rapper Jay-Z has made his first foray into fintech with an investment in credit-building start-up Altro.
Altro – formerly known as Perch – is an app which allows users to build up credit through recurring payments for digital subscriptions such as Netflix or Spotify.
Jay-Z’s Marcy Venture Partners (MVP) was one of the firms behind an $18m (£14.42m) Series A funding round led by Pendulum. MVP has also invested in the app’s pre-seed round, and has provided a convertible note to the company in the past.
Jay-Z co-founded MVP in 2019 with a remit to invest in “innovative businesses and mass-market brands…with an emphasis on positive impact including sustainability, inclusivity, accessibility, empowerment and health & wellness.”
Citi Ventures, Black Capital Fund, Concrete Rose fund and several individual investors also participated in the Altro fundraise.
Altro’s co-founder and chief executive Michael Broughton said that the new funding will be used to build the company’s financial literacy catalogue and to reach new users who are looking to build or repair credit.
“With all the other available data to demonstrate a person’s fiscal responsibility, there’s no excuse to continue to rely on outdated methods like credit cards and loan payments, which are predatory and exclusionary at best,“ said Broughton.
”Perch has proven the demand for more accessible forms of credit building, and now as Altro, we’re creating a movement, bringing financial empowerment to all.”
Altro was launched in 2020. It has attracted approximately $21m since in total funding since then.