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Thursday, 28 May 2015

Website ventures support budget planning

EVER forgotten a family birthday? Or stuck with the same insurer for years simply to avoid the hassle of switching?

If so, Catton man Glenn Morrill could the have perfect solution.

The former Northern Rock employee, who since leaving has worked on a range of innovative internet businesses, has joined forces with a former colleague to launch an online lifestyle personal assistant service.

MyMoneyPA provides an money diary that issues crucial reminders, an optional budget planner and independently conducted research on products and services in one tailored package.

“We wanted to create a lifestyle personal assistant that puts the individual in control, allowing them to save time and money as well,” Glenn said.

“It’s about all aspects of how people run their lives, whether it’s just about not forgetting aunty Dorris’s birthday, or working out where the most popular places would be to get something.

“You tend to find when people are making decisions they ask around in their coffee circles or in the pub, going on the recommendations of others, rather than just being drawn in by advertising.

“MyMoneyPA is a way of providing that information at your fingertips.”

Glenn launched the service following a career based around the twin skills of IT and finance management.

His previous internet businesses have included mortgage arranger Frontstep.co.uk and mortgagebundles.com.

Before that, he oversaw IT strategy for Northern Rock, where he met Ian Chapman - then Rock operational director, now Glenn’s co-director.

The new business, which is based at Stocksfield Hall, makes money solely through affiliate fees – money paid by external service providers who receive sales through reference from the site – but Glenn stresses it aims to be completely impartial and independent in its function.

“That’s why we have no advertising,” he added.

“We see so many websites just cluttered with advertising, trying to make a fast buck but we see this as a long-term project.

“We also stress that we will protect people’s data – we’re not passing it on to anybody else as it’s about making individuals feel comfortable about using the site.”

Despite his background, Glenn said starting a new business was always daunting.

However, the company had been careful to carry out the necessary consumer research beforehand and Glenn predicts his team will grow from three to seven by the end of the year and up to 20 by the end of next year.

Despite only advertising through social media so far, over 500 people have joined the site already, giving varying positive responses.

“There are different benefits for different people,” he said.

“One person told us they hadn’t changed either their home or car insurance for years and years because they felt it was too difficult.

“When they ended up changing, they cut the costs by around 50 per cent.”

For more information, see http://www.mymoneypa.com