We are bridging the gap between money and relationships. Our platform makes it easier to raise funds needed to start a business, go back to school, or pay for emergencies."
As income inequality has skyrocketed across America, we’re seeing an exploding need for tools that allow people to help one another financially.
In the US, roughly $200B in personal loans are made each year—often through a ‘handshake’ deal that can go badly financially and interpersonally. Through Pigeon Loans, any two people can easily create a loan agreement that includes a contract, payment plan, and friendly reminders. Getting financial help from those who care for you most is the best path for many to get low-interest rates on favorable terms. We make this easy for the world.
How did you come up with the idea for this venture?
As the founders of Pigeon Loans, Brian Bristol and I have first-hand experience with the subject of borrowing and lending from those we know.
During the 2008 financial crisis, I witnessed the power of the community coming together to help each other. My family was in a tough spot, and loans were the only way out. Even back then, I realized that it made little sense that most of these loans were done without the help of any software.
As the pandemic began to rage, I saw many friends in need. It’s the balance between wanting to help and keeping the relationship from getting awkward."
No one wants to send or receive those monthly payment reminders among friends.
Can you please share how your time at Kogod shaped your entrepreneurial journey?
Kogod is the place where I finally decided that I wanted to be an entrepreneur. I had no idea how I would do it or even what I would build. The classes I took highlighted real problems in the world. I was motivated by the fact that so much of our planet is still broken and that there was no guarantee any other person would fix them.
The best thing about Kogod is the students—everyone brings a unique global perspective. I was in the minority as an American-born citizen in many of my classes. A global perspective is key because so much of our worldview gets stuck in the country we were raised in. This global atmosphere provides a deeper context for thinking about the problems that technology can solve.
What advice do you have for budding entrepreneurs?
I know how hard it can be to break into the technology industry, especially as someone who didn’t have connections in the space from the start. Making that ‘breakthrough’ a little easier for the next generation of Kogod students is a goal of mine.
My main advice for budding entrepreneurs is twofold. First, have a ‘learner’s mindset’ about everything.
Extreme curiosity about the world is the only way to discover ideas that can work and have the passion for going deep into them."
Second, it’s not ‘what you know; it’s who you know.’ The biggest mistake I made post-Kogod was waiting too long to start finding mentors and connections in the area I was pursuing. It’s easy as a young person to think you need to ‘do something’ before you can get the ear of certain people. The truth is quite different. When you are young, it is an ideal time to start reaching out to people who are more successful than you. You will inevitably make friends and connections who will be your allies along your journey. Put yourself out there today. Start with emails asking for 15-20 minutes on a call to learn from someone's career journey or even offer to buy them coffee.
The world needs more entrepreneurs. Remember, the risk is overstated! No matter what you will learn and earn the respect of many. Good luck!