Young entrepreneur’s new business aims to keep Portsmouth youngsters out of debt 

Entrepreneur Alfie Ruffell is creating an app to help people manage their finances and is teaching young people about dealing with debt Picture: Vernon Nash (180418-004)
Entrepreneur Alfie Ruffell is creating an app to help people manage their finances and is teaching young people about dealing with debt Picture: Vernon Nash (180418-004)

AN ENTREPRENEUR is hoping to change the way society views personal finance with his new app.

Alfie Ruffell, 23, from Henderson Road, Eastney, has set up a tech business called TRAC Finance, which stands for Take Responsibility And Control, to help people manage their finances.

Since he launched his business, which includes an app and courses, last month, he has seen an incredible uptake, particularly with schools as they are looking for ways to educate teenagers so they are ready to handle their personal finances when they leave school and avoid debt.

Alfie said: ‘My main goal was to get the app on course and get it in front of banks, but it was difficult. When I got it in front of schools, that’s when I started to have a good response. The more people I spoke to, the more I was told that people want personal finance education to be made part of the curriculum. At the moment, it is not, so you have to find a way round the system, like offering the classes as an after-school lesson or as an online option. I want to go into schools and talk to them about finance and credit, and hopefully inspire and educate the pupils. It is important as it will help them in their later lives. It is getting there, we are starting to get the right people on board and see the idea take off.’

Alfie said he saw first-hand the detrimental effects of bad credit through his previous jobs in car finance and as a mortgage advisor. He says this experience also taught him how valuable a good credit score was for future prospects.

He also built up debt with one business venture - which left him worrying about how his credit rating would affect him in later life.

Alfie also ran a machinery business with his dad, which he says taught him how to deal with accounts.

But a defining moment for Alfie came when he was caught speeding and sent on a driver’s awareness course.

He said: ‘I should know that I should not be speeding but everybody deserves a second chance, and to be re-educated. That’s when I thought that the same should apply for finances. You don’t get a second chance when it comes to credit, and the education is not readily given. I thought that there had to be a better way, so I went home and researched about how many people are in a bad situation when it comes to their personal finances. With my background and personal experiences I thought that I should build a business to help people overcome declines and show them how to get a good credit rating.’  

Alfie has set up a website, where people can book online or one-to-one courses. For more go to tracfinance.com

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If you would like to nominate a new business or event, e-mail newsdesk@thenews.co.uk or call (023) 9262 2118.