Boston-Based Willow Helps Women Manage Their Financial Wellbeing

The dual business-to-business and business-to-consumer platform is used by financial institutions and women.
Written by Miranda Perez
June 22, 2022Updated: July 22, 2022
Photo: Willow, Built In
Lacy Garcia, Willow founder and CEO. | Photo: Willow, Built In

Sure the latest initiatives from the Teslas, Apples and Googles of the industry tend to dominate the tech news space — and with good reason. Still, the tech titans aren’t the only ones bringing innovation to the sector.

In an effort to highlight up-and-coming startups, Built In has launched The Future 5 across 11 major U.S. tech hubs. Each quarter, we will feature five tech startups, nonprofits or entrepreneurs in each of these hubs who just might be working on the next big thing. You can check out last quarter’s Boston round-up here.

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When it comes to managing finances and getting ahead economically, women are largely disenfranchised. Outside of the gender pay wage gap, noting that women in 2020 made 83 cents for every dollar earned by men, the average woman also lacks access to meaningful financial advice from people they can relate to.

Recent data shows that 73 percent of women are “unhappy” with the financial service they receive. The divisive combination of being paid less and receiving inconsequential guidance leaves many women struggling with overall financial security. 

Lacy Garcia, CEO and founder of Boston-based Willow, a financial advisory and life coaching startup for women, knows this struggle all too well because she’s lived it. In her mid-30s, Garcia faced many of life’s hurdles all at once: fertility complications, motherhood, a demanding career and divorce.

“Despite being in financial services myself, I didn’t have all of the answers. I needed financial and life guidance,” Garcia told Built In via email. “Navigating this intensely difficult time in my life made me realize that there is a massive need to provide more customized support for women facing transitions such as divorce, widowhood, fertility challenges and other life-altering events that have a direct impact on their financial health and wellbeing.”

Navigating this intensely difficult time in my life made me realize that there is a massive need to provide more customized support for women.”

After noticing the gap and lack of access to resources, Garcia founded Willow as a dual business-to-business and business-to-consumer platform that provides financial education, personalized coaching and life journey support to women. 

Through Willow’s platform, women can receive personalized financial guidance with a focus on top stressors such as divorce, grief, fertility, family building, entrepreneurship or retirement.

Willow’s B2B clients include wealth management firms, banks, credit unions and credit services.

“Through partnerships with these institutions, we’ve helped thousands of women access personalized, goal-oriented, financial and life guidance,” Garcia said.

The startup has developed these partnerships with a team of 10 employees and no venture capital funding.

Raising VC funding can be a huge distraction and we haven’t wanted to allocate the time or attention away from scaling the business,” Garcia said.

Garcia expects to hire additional employees with a focus on adding marketing, sales and client success team members over the next year.

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