Former Business Insider execs launch personal finance brand on Substack

Open publishing and newsletter technology has “opened the market” for journalists to launch new publications according to the co-founder of a new title targeting personal finance.

Substack will be used as the content management and newsletter publishing system for MoneyIn2 which will offer personal finance advice to new investors and young people.

Co-founded by Julian Childs, former international revenue chief of Business Insider, the outlet will offer newsletters with two minutes worth of information per day.

Other co-founders include editor Jim Edwards (formerly editor in chief of Business Insider) and Kathryn Tuggle who will head up marketing. Jim Edwards is a paid contributor to Press Gazette.

Childs told Press Gazette: “I really love the newsletter model, it’s had a bit of a resurgence, and that’s been accelerated by platforms like Substack.

“That model of open CMS for newsletters has really opened the market for journalists to publish, in the same way that the internet and social media did 20 years ago.”

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He added: “With newsletters, you’re more in control of building a relationship with your audience and you’re not reliant on models like Google who at any point can decide to switch things.”

Childs said that MoneyIn2 will respond to two information gaps in the current personal finance news service. The first is information catered to young people and those who do not already have money. The second is an emphasis on growing money, not just saving it.

Subscribers can receive the newsletter for free and paid subscribers receive access to extra posts and the full archive. The cost is £7/month or £65/year. The title will also carry advertising.

Substack offers journalists a free CMS but takes 10% of the revenue via subscriptions. Publishers on Substack keep all their direct-sold advertising revenue. Substack does not run its own advertising.

US-based entertainment industry title The Ankler is run entirely on Substack and is predicting revenue of $10m this year.

Childs explained where the initial funds to launch came from: “We’ve got some money from friends and family, we’ve individually put money in, we have a small amount of investment, and we expect to raise more later this year to accelerate our growth.

“But at the moment, we’re bootstrapping because we feel that it’s important for us to get out there.”

He added: “It’s interesting because so much of our audience target is now starting to take financial advice from social media which is great but also super risky.”

Of those who follow financial guidance from social media, 74% lose money or experienced an undesired outcome, according to research by Capital One.

Childs said: “We’re a credible source aiming to help people with smart advice, not ‘get rich quick’ schemes.”

“There’s also less competition for this type of media in the UK, unlike the US where there are some great newsletters which do similar projects to us.”

The outlet will start with three newsletters a week but hopes to increase to daily frequency and being expanding the editorial team.

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