Parachute, a startup tackling the debt crisis, launches with Highline Beta’s Venture Studio

It’s impossible to ignore the growing debt crisis that so many are facing. Overspending is at an all-time high, which leads to increased borrowing, often at exorbitant rates (30-600%), which leads people into a spiral of debt. Traditional financial institutions haven’t been able to solve this problem, often because they’re not lending to people with lower credit scores. People are then forced to find alternative lending solutions such as payday, which aren’t designed to get you out of the debt trap.

It’s a near-impossible trap to escape from.

Parachute aims to solve this problem by consolidating people’s debt and putting them on a path towards financial wellbeing. Through behavioral analytics and ongoing support for its customers, Parachute will help people improve their credit score and receive financial rewards for improving their financial habits. Parachute loans will improve over time–which is not a concept that is available in-market today–meaning that customers get more benefits (in terms of savings, improved cash flow, increased credit score) as the loan progresses. Imagine taking out a loan and over time and the cost of the loan actually decreases because you’ve improved your financial wellbeing? That’s the promise of Parachute.

The company was founded by two senior executives with deep financial services and entrepreneurial experience. Bruce Hodges has over 20 years experience working in large financial and insurance institutions including CIBC and Manulife. Mark Levitan has over 20 years experience at companies such as AGF Trust Company and TD, as a leader in strategy, product and sales management. Both Bruce and Mark have incredible experience in lending, having seen first hand the challenges many people face escaping from debt.

Bruce Hodges joined Highline Beta’s Venture Studio as a Founder-in-Residence in August 2021 to begin exploring new startup ideas. Through the Venture Studio and a series of explorations into problem and opportunity spaces, we identified lending, debt consolidation and financial wellbeing as key focus areas. Mark joined quickly thereafter to form Parachute. The company is closing its pre-seed financing round, with Highline Beta leading alongside several key angel investors, and is now preparing to launch in-market with customers.

We’re excited about the potential to genuinely improve people’s lives by helping them reduce their debt and receive friendlier, more user-centric financial options.

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