This week Toronto-based KOHO launched a new service, KOHO Credit Building, reports all activity to TransUnion, one of the two major reporting bureaus in Canada. The service costs $7/month, and is aimed at helping clients improve their credit scores. By issuing a small line of credit and reporting on it monthly, clients can generate a positive credit history. 

“Historically, the options for building credit are expensive, murky or both, especially for middle-class Canadians,” explains CEO of KOHO, Daniel Eberhard. “We think our approach to credit building is a new form factor. It’s simple, affordable and transparent. We’re really proud of it.”

The service complements KOHO’s existing product shelf, which is based on a full-service banking or savings account with no fees. The account includes a prepaid Visa card that earns cash back. 

The startup is backed by industry giant Power Corp., and it’s growth trends are impressive. With over 350k users, and $2 billion a year in transactions, it’s one to watch (but certainly not the only one, with a nod to MotusBank, Mogo, NeoFinancial and Revolut). 

Our insights team at LARI particularly likes their publicly accessible product roadmap. It allows anyone to see what’s in their development timeline for the year ahead, and provides virtual collaboration options for visitors to submit feature requests. We applaud this approach for a few reasons:

  • Engaging heavily with clients in product development is the surest path to a winning product
  • Transparency ranks highly on the list of what Canadian clients value from a financial services provider
  • Collecting client feedback during ALL cycles of product development will hands-down result in better products than a gated approach with “windows” for feedback and refinement


Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin… today’s sophisticated investors are increasingly asking about these digital asset alternatives to traditional wealth holdings. So it’s not surprising to see an investment pairing of minds and equity in the form of Mogo’s strategic investment in Coinsquare. 

Through the deal, Mogo acquires nearly 20% of Toronto-based Coinsquare, digital asset trading platform. The deal includes an option to expand to 40%. This deal expands an existing relationship – Coinsquare is the trading platform today for MogoCrypto, which allows Mogo members to buy and sell bitcoin. The current investment by Mogo brings their digital wallet capabilities closer to the digital trading platform operated by Coinsquare.

While bigger industry players may be inclined to write off digital asset alternatives as a niche market (Coinsquare saw trading volume of $525 million in Jan, 2021), it’s undoubtedly a growing need. Speaking of the investment in Coinsquare, Greg Feller, President of Mogo, said: “This major strategic transaction with Coinsquare gives us a significant stake in a highly valuable platform in one of the most exciting and fastest growing sectors of fintech. We believe there are significant opportunities to drive value for both Mogo and Coinsquare by bringing together Mogo’s leading digital wallet capabilities and Coinsquare’s leading digital trading platform.”

Mogo is undoubtedly an exciting Canadian FinTech to watch. With over one million members it’s user base growth is impressive. Through the Mogo app, consumers can access a digital spending account with Mogo Visa* Platinum Prepaid Card featuring automatic carbon offsetting, easily buy and sell bitcoin, and get free monthly credit score monitoring, ID fraud protection, and personal loans.

How will Canada’s big banks and brokerages address the new variety of digital assets some investors are looking for? Will they too pair up with FinTech players through strategic investments? Will they build-in house or license from a third party? From an experience perspective, what would happen today if I walked into a branch and asked to invest in Ethereum?