In this week’s episode, we are joined by Billie Simmons, the co-founder of Daylight, a financial services company aimed at the LGBTQ+ community. In addition to offering a banking platform, Daylight has a family financing tool that helps queer people have kids more quickly and cheaply.
The conversation kicks off with an article by USA Today that highlights how Gen Z makes up a large proportion of the LGBTQ+ community. Billie explains that this generational shift towards many more people identifying as LGBTQ+ is great for tearing down societal structures and spurring innovation in the finance space; it’s essentially giving Daylight an ever-expanding audience to serve.
“What it really indicates is more and more people in the younger generations are thinking about societal structures and expectations of things like heterosexuality and monogamy, and [they are] discarding them and saying, ‘I don’t want to do that,’” she tells us. She adds, “and it’s exciting for us, because that means we get to build things with that in mind, like, what does the joint bank account look like when there are three of you in a throuple?”
Our discussion moves to where the inspiration for Daylight stemmed from. “So, my lightbulb moment for Daylight was talking to my co-founder, and essentially getting user-interviewed about my experiences as a trans woman in the US accessing financial services.”
It wasn’t an easy journey for Billie. “I had to not only spend a whole bunch of time and money getting my name updated, legally, but then I had to take that document that essentially says, ‘Hi, I’m a trans person, this is my old name, this is my new name, please don’t discriminate against me and give me a card’ to every single financial institution that I banked with.” As a result, Daylight’s mission shaped into helping the LGBTQ+ community navigate these complexities so they can live their best lives.
Billie then tells us about Daylight’s success stories (including how they got to advocate for the trans community’s data protection and privacy at the White House), some interesting innovations the platform has, as well as Billie’s personal journey with tech and the biggest frustration she encountered in the industry. We finish with the lightning round, where we discover her game-changing piece of tech and what she considers to be the evilest application of tech.
To learn more about Daylight, visit the website: https://www.joindaylight.com/