BIRMINGHAM, Ala. and DES MOINES, Iowa, June 7 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- BBVA Compass and SmartyPig today announced a strategic alliance where BBVA Compass will serve as depository institution to SmartyPig's customers in the United States and work with SmartyPig to expand their shared customer base. SmartyPig is the first and only online banking application to combine Web 2.0 user applications with the viral nature of social networking platforms, making savings and spending a social experience. Through its popular consumer finance site, individuals and families can benefit from an industry-leading interest rate on their savings goals, in addition to cash back rewards of up to 12 percent when they make purchases at premium retail and travel companies.
"We are extremely pleased to announce this strategic alliance with SmartyPig as we share a common philosophy of helping consumers reach their financial goals through innovative and easy-to-understand solutions," said Manolo Sanchez, BBVA Compass president and CEO. "Joining forces with SmartyPig is a prime example of how BBVA Compass is focused on bringing innovative, leading-edge technologies to market and expanding its product set to reach a broader customer base."
SmartyPig empowers people to rid themselves of the "buy now, pay later" mindset through its platform that allows customers to save for specific financial goals like a wedding, a vacation or a flat-screen TV. A goal can be funded through monthly recurring deposits from existing checking or savings accounts or can be made with one-time contributions. Deposit amounts are set by the customer or can be calculated by using an interactive calculator to determine the amount needed each month to reach the predetermined goal. In addition, you can allow your friends and family members to help you save by sharing your goal, all while keeping your personal information safe and secure. Savings accounts associated with SmartyPig accounts will be provided by BBVA Compass and FDIC insured to the maximum level allowed by law.
"SmartyPig has led the charge in creating the next generation of banking solutions, leveraging Web 2.0 features that have the ability to motivate people to use their money more wisely," added Rick Claypoole, senior vice president and director of consumer deposits at BBVA Compass. "Customers today are concerned with reducing debt levels and an unstable economy. We share SmartyPig's vision that the time has never been better to help consumers get back to the basic idea of sensibly saving for the things they want in life."
BBVA Compass is a Sunbelt-based financial institution that operates as the U.S. arm of the BBVA Group, a global financial services group with assets of more than $765 billion and operations in more than 30 countries.
"BBVA Compass is an important choice for us as it was one of the few banks able to handle the scale of SmartyPig's considerable growth while quickly and seamlessly integrating our current customers," said Bob Weinschenk, chief executive officer, SmartyPig. "In addition, the superior global brand recognition of the BBVA name is important given our ambitions for accessing the global markets. This strategic alliance also provides SmartyPig customers access to BBVA Compass' broad array of innovative banking products and services."
SmartyPig customers will receive notice today, June 7, via e-mail allowing them to choose whether to continue their SmartyPig accounts with BBVA Compass as their new bank. Customers who continue their SmartyPig accounts will authorize the transfer of their funds on deposit at West Bank to their new BBVA Compass savings account effective as of August 1, 2010.
ABOUT BBVA COMPASS
BBVA Compass is a Sunbelt-based financial institution that operates 724 branches including 387 in Texas, 92 in Alabama, 65 in California, 77 in Arizona, 45 in Florida, 36 in Colorado and 22 in New Mexico. BBVA Compass is the 15th largest U.S. commercial bank based on deposit market share and ranks among the largest banks in Alabama (3rd), Texas (4th) and Arizona (5th). For the second consecutive year, BBVA Compass was named as a "Lender of the Year" by the Small Business Administration (SBA). Additional information concerning BBVA Compass can be found on our website www.bbvacompass.com.
BBVA Compass is a subsidiary of Compass Bancshares, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of BBVA (NYSE: BBVA) (MAD: BBVA). BBVA is a financial services group with more than $765 billion in total assets, 48 million clients, 7,500 branches and approximately 104,000 employees in more than 30 countries. BBVA ranks among the top 20 largest financial institutions in the world based on market capitalization and 20th in Global Finance magazine's list of the "World's 50 Safest Banks" for 2009. BBVA provides its customers around the world with a full range of financial services, including commercial and wholesale banking, retail banking services, consumer loans, mortgages, credit cards, securities brokerage, wealth management, pension plan management and insurance. The BBVA Group maintains a leadership position in Spain, Mexico, Latin America and the Sunbelt Region of the United States as well as operations in China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Singapore, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.
SmartyPig is a consumer finance site where you can earn high interest on your savings goals and get cash back when making a purchase with premium retailers and top travel companies, all while never relying on credit cards. Family and friends can also help achieve financial goals by securely contributing to your account via social networks like Facebook. Launched in April 2008, SmartyPig has proven extremely popular with consumers throughout the U.S. and in Australia where it partnered with Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) to launch www.smartypig.com.au. To date, SmartyPig customers have opened savings accounts with more than $400 million in U.S. deposits and have reached more than $150 million in savings goals. The system is based on proprietary, patent-pending technology and features the latest in security standards. SmartyPig's U.S. banking relationship is currently with West Bank, a subsidiary of West Bancorporation, Inc., until that relationship transitions to BBVA Compass. All funds held on deposit are FDIC insured up to the applicable legal limits. SmartyPig is based in Des Moines, Iowa. For more information on how to get started, please visit http://www.smartypig.com and follow us on Twitter: www.twitter.com/smartypig.
BBVA Compass is a trade name of Compass Bank. Compass Bank, member FDIC
SOURCE BBVA Compass; SmartyPig