Wealthcare app Hugo launches in Singapore
Wealthcare app Hugo launches in Singapore
It's hard trying to eke out a humble life while on a simple wage in Singapore, especially with mounting costs of living and the incessant work-hard-get-rich narratives bandied among starry-eyed, ambitious Singaporeans. Now, keeping up with savings and expenses has been made slightly easier with a new 'wealthcare' app in town.
Hugo is an ambitious financial well-being app that puts the user's saving and spending habits first, in an intuitive manner. Besides having a typical digital payments platform, the newly-launched app has four core features that can help just about any Singaporean build a sense of financial security, regardless of the level of income they take home.
Numberless Visa Platinum Debit Card
Built into Hugo is a numberless Visa debit card that powers the app's spending and tracking of expenses. While the card isn't any different from other digital alternatives, Hugo has an integrated feature that lets users temporarily 'lock' the card for security and expenditure control.
As it's a digital card issued by Visa, it's fully functional as a regular Visa card, with zero foreign exchange fees and some Visa Platinum benefits extended to the Hugo app user.
Hugo Spend Account
The Home Screen (first tab) interface summarises all transactions made on the Hugo card, plus it lets the users view Money Pots and Gold Vault at a glance. Users can load money into the Hugo account (via any FAST-participating banks in Singapore) and proceed to make purchases with their numberless Visa card. According to its founders, all Hugo accounts are safeguarded within DBS Bank.
The Spend Account helps to track and categorise day-to-day expenses. Users can see details of every transaction, check out the merchant, add notes to each receipt, and share or save the details to the phone. Spend Account comes with a Roundup feature, which rounds up all transactions to the nearest dollar and accumulates that Roundup amount into a separate Roundup savings ledger.
Currently, Roundup only applies to transactions on the numberless Visa debit card, and the app can only pull expenditure data from the same card. According to Hugo, the company is working towards additional app features, such as suggestions and recommendations, to help users switch to cash-saving alternatives.
The money accumulated via Roundup is moved weekly (every Wednesday) to Hugo's in-app Gold Vault, a buying-and-selling platform for actual, physical gold. Users can check live gold prices to buy or sell gold at a 0.5% nominal fee per transaction. The physical gold allocated for investment is stored in an accredited London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) vault, while the gold is insured by Lloyds of London.
The Money Pot in Hugo is a separate savings feature that lets users accumulate savings and track progress for saving goals over time. In essence, setting up a scheduled Money Pot for a goal (like buying a new smartphone) will see money transferred into the Money Pot every month or on an ad-hoc basis.
Once the Money Pot goal is reached, the money can be transferred back to Spend Account to pay for the goal. Money Pots can be deleted at any time, and any funds inside a Money Pot will move into the Spend Account's wallet for use.
“Hugo is beyond just a product. It is a philosophy that evolves and grows with our customers, partners and people who we fondly call #HugoHeroes. Hugo is innovative and listens. Our current form and functionality as well as Hugo’s future development plans will continue to be driven by consumer feedback, to offer a frictionless banking experience. Singapore is our home market and we do have expansion plans for South-East Asia,” said Braham Djidjelli, Chief Product Officer and Co-Founder of Hugo.
To learn more about Hugo, you can check out the app's FAQ at its official website here, or visit its social media handles (LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter). Hugo is currently available on iOS via the App Store, and Android via Google Play.
Editorial Note and Disclaimer: None of the information or opinions contained here constitutes an offer (or solicitation of an offer) to use any financial product or instrument, to make any investment, or to participate in any particular financial management strategy. This is just an app launch that the HWZ editorial team found interesting enough to cover.