February 09, 2010 17:11 ET

BancVue Takes Aim at Financial Literacy With Acquisition of Skill-Life, Inc.

Online Financial Education Provider to Enhance Solution-Based Lineup of Services for Community Banks and Credit Unions

AUSTIN, TX--(Marketwire - February 9, 2010) - BancVue (, a consumer research-driven product development and marketing company for community banks and credit unions around the country, today announced it has acquired Skill-Life, Inc., a provider of interactive, game-based resources focused on developing financial literacy.

Skill-Life's youth-oriented platform adds to BancVue's innovative lineup of solutions designed to help community financial institutions win the war against megabanks.

"An important mission of any community financial institution is providing financial education for its customers," said Gabe Krajicek, Chief Executive Officer of BancVue, "and Skill-Life has developed just the sort of Web-based applications that can teach children the fundamentals of managing their money. The combination is a compelling value proposition for our community bank and credit union partners and their account holders."

MoneyIsland™ formerly called CentsCity, Skill-Life's flagship product, is essentially an online world where 'tweens' -- children in the so-called middle years between 8 and 12 -- learn financial skills and earn rewards from their financial institution. Parents are able to follow their children's progress through a dynamic administrative interface. The firm expects to develop additional products applying Skill-Life's platform, which incorporates casual games, interactive videos and quizzes, administrative tools for adults, and a customizable rewards system.

"With 81% of 'tweens' playing online games, and 87% of adults interested in teaching their children financial responsibility, we're at the nexus of an emerging opportunity," said Felix Brandon Lloyd, President of Skill-Life. "Through the extensive network of branches of BancVue's clients, hundreds of thousands, eventually millions, of children around the country will gain access to much-needed financial education."

The Skill-Life transaction is BancVue's first corporate acquisition. The Texas-based firm has recently announced a number of strategic partnerships, including Deluxe and CSI. BancVue and its marketing partner FIRST ROI provide REALChecking®, a system of innovative products, superior marketing, and data-driven consulting, INMO™, the online account opening system with the highest funding rate, and FIRSTBranch®, a dynamic online marketing system designed exclusively for community financial institutions.

"In Skill-Life, we're recognizing that industry leaders like Mr. Lloyd and his company can benefit from our network of clients," says Krajicek. "At the same time, we gain from their creativity and enhance our own ability to serve BancVue's partners."

BancVue was recognized last year as the second fastest growing financial services firm in Inc. Magazine's 28th Annual List of America's Fastest-Growing Private Companies -- the Inc. 500. The Austin-based firm expects to continue its growth trajectory with the nationwide launch of Kasasa™, a national brand of superior products designed to unite community financial institutions with the marketing scale they need to compete and win.

About BancVue

BancVue is the leading provider of innovative products, marketing, and consulting solutions to community financial institutions nationwide. Serving over 650 community banks and credit unions around the country, BancVue's solutions allow these institutions to compete and win in the war against the megabanks and direct banks. Community financial institutions benefit from the development and implementation of BancVue's innovative products, including Kasasa™, a national brand of superior products that gives community financial institutions the marketing scale they need to compete with the megabanks, and REALChecking®, a system of innovative products, superior marketing, and data-driven consulting. For more information on BancVue, visit

About Skill-Life

Skill-Life, Inc. began as CentsCity, LLC in January 2007 with the mission of building financially healthy families and communities. With seed funding from the social venture fund Echoing Green, Skill-Life has since gained support from the Alpha Lab, Idea Foundry, Technology Collaborative, Grable Foundation, Skandalaris Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, and several private investors. The Beta version of Skill-Life's flagship product, formerly called CentsCity, launched in August 2009, employing online games and real-world incentives to teach tweens financial skills.

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