A Conversation with Ariel Morales of Pullce
At the beginning of October, we had a chance to sit down with Ariel Morales, the creator and CEO of Pullce, a rewards program platform based in Miami, Florida. Check out his interview below:
Tell us a little bit about yourself. What’s your background, and how did you end up where you are today?
Basically I have a technical developer background, related to finance, and I specialize in cloud computing. I graduated from the University of Informatic Sciences in Cuba in 2009 and then moved to Ecuador for two years and worked as a developer for a fintech company there. Later, I moved to the U.S. and continued to work with other start-up companies as CTO or developer, always in the same niche of fintech. With some of these apps and companies I had to deal with lawyers and KYC (Know Your Customer) processes, trying to open bank accounts spanning across different countries, while also trying to develop different products. I love how technology and finance can work together to bring new products to the market.
What is Pullce? Why were you interested in starting an app like this?
Pullce is a rewards platform for users who are interested in earning rewards and incentives on their daily purchases. In Ecuador I tried to launch a similar start-up that gave loyalty points to users based on their local purchasing activity. It wasn’t the right timing for it to work out, however, and ultimately it failed, due to a lot of different reasons. Then two years ago I decided to re-try the idea with a different point of view – loyalty rewards. That’s when Pullce started. We first launched with card-linking but decided to move in another direction that would be more streamlined, so now users simply scan their receipts to earn points through the Pullce app. So far we’re focused on Latin American communities in the U.S. but are looking to branch out in the future.
Our name Pullce is a conjunction of two main ideas: first the idea of pulling or drawing in people from their hearts, where they’re already interested (“Pull); and second, customer engagement (“ce). Put those ideas together and you get “Pullce.”
As someone who has had a lot of experience in different fintech settings, what are the top skills that you think are most important for people entering the start-up world? What are your top recommendations?
Through my journey, I’ve learned it’s most important to have consistency and focus instead of trying to build many different things at the same time (you’ll end up accomplishing nothing). The goal is always consistency, to excel on one main product before branching out. Second, be prepared! Launching a start-up is a challenging process with a lot to learn along the way.
What are you excited about right now in the world of fintech, either at Pullce or elsewhere?
Fintech is a major trend right now! So many financial companies are incorporating tech into their programs because so many users are interested in having those features in their products. Now you don’t have to have a financial product to create an embedded banking solution. At Pullce we’re taking advantage of open banking trends and fintech business models to utilize in our products and services. We want to have a common space between fintech and rewards, which clearly is increasing in popularity.
Where do you see yourself and your company in five years from now?
We have a lot to give to our users, and we’re excited to see how things will take off with Pullce in the next five years. It’s the right time to be in this sphere! There are a lot of features we would like to continue to build into the platform as we look to the future. We know that fintech will continue to be part of people’s lives moving forward, and there will be so many new use cases that come up in the next 5-10 years to be able to bring to our users as well.
To find out more about Ariel’s company Pullce, you can visit their website. If you want to know more about how to get started with open banking technology, reach out to us at Pentadata to learn more.