✅ JP Morgan Chase Buys College Financial Planning Platform Frank
For today’s digest, JPMorgan Chase has acquired the college financial planning platform Frank, the bank announced in a press release Tuesday. The outlet allows students to access a streamlined application process for student aid. On top of that, it offers financial advice and a marketplace to find discounted online classes for college credit. According to a Reuters report, the bank has been somewhat of a serial acquirer this year, making more than 30 deals. However, many of those transactions have been outside banking — or banking-adjacent. Regulations prohibit the bank from acquiring additional U.S.-based deposit-taking institutions because JPMorgan Chase already holds more than 10% of U.S. deposits. The details of the acquisition are somewhat vague since the financial terms of the deal were not made public. However, the average size of deals JPMorgan has made in the past year is smaller than at almost any other point in the past decade, Dealogic found. Leslie Wims Morris, Chase’s head of corporate development, told Reuters that it’s less about deal size, but more about strategic impact. The acquisition comes hot on the heels of two other moves the nation’s largest bank made this month. It agreed to buy the restaurant platform The Infatuation, which owns the Zagat guidebook and review brand. On top of that, the bank has agreed to acquire nearly 75% of German car-maker Volkswagen’s payments platform. With all of that said, it will be interesting if these unorthodox acquisition strategies will pay off for JPMorgan in the coming months.