Teens spend €100,000 using prepaid cards created by Irish 16-year-olds

Teens spend €100,000 using prepaid cards created by Irish 16-year-olds
Eva, Louisa and Leah of the Makes Cents team.

Irish teenagers signed up to a new prepaid card service have spent over €100,000 in the last six months in 14,000 online and in-store purchases.

Three teenagers are behind the 'Makes Cents' card for eight to 18-year-olds, which has seen over 3,000 accounts created since its inception last March.

16-year olds Eva Barnett, Leah Keogh and Louisa Woods only devised the card because they wanted to win a new iPhone in a competition.

The students at Sacred Heart Secondary School in Drogheda, Co. Louth say the card, which has been snapped up by 2,000 parents for their kids, offers financial independence and is safer than carrying cash.

The girls were one of four junior teams who won their category in the Prepaid Financial Services €1m Innovation Fund last year and have won a number of national awards since.

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One week left of exams and then it’s Summerrrrrr 😎☀️ ‘Tis the sea-sun to get a Makes Cents Card! Download the App today! 📱🐷 💶 #makescentscard

A post shared by Makes Cents (@makescentscard) on

"Our business teacher told us about the competition and we weren't really interested in it at first, but when we saw the iPhone 8s up for grabs, our names were all over it," laughed Leah Keogh.

"We noticed there was a gap in the market for teens. If a teenager is doing online shopping and they like something, they have to wait until their parent is free to get their card and buy it for us.

"Makes Cents works like any prepaid card where the money is uploaded and then spent like a debit card, so we can do our own shopping without waiting for our parents but yet our parents can track all our spending via an app which shows them the balance and transaction history.

"Non-legal purchases for under 18s are automatically blocked so youths can't get onto online gambling or buy alcohol with the cards.

It can also prove safer than carrying cash as you won't be bullied for it. If the card is taken, parents can automatically lock the card and reopen it, if found again.

Since they officially launched the card in March this year, there have been over 3,000 accounts created with a huge increase in sales just ahead of this year's school term.

More than €100,000 worth of purchases have been made in 14,000 transactions.

Now the students, who are in Transition Year aim to further market their new business in the coming months.

The Makes Cents Card was announced as one of three finalists in the Ecommerce and Payments Awards 2019, in the Best Payments Start-up Award.

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