Planned Departure makes it easier to organise digital assets during life and manage digital legacy after life.
In an increasingly digital world, it is important to consider how our digital legacy will be administered. Traditional estate planning vehicles, such as wills, mostly deal with the distribution of physical assets. Online accounts and other digital assets are often not included in a traditional will. As a result, online accounts can be lost, locked or abused after the user has passed away.
Planned Departure helps you organise your digital assets in one place and passes them to the right people at the right time, with instructions on how those assets should be handled. It makes it easier to manage and organise your digital footprint during life, create social media wills and safeguard your digital legacy after life.
Planned Departure provides peace of mind by ensuring that online accounts and digital assets are transferred to the right people. It protects these accounts from becoming lost or being an easy target for identity thieves. Planned Departure stores everything in an encrypted format and allows 24/7 access to the user. It uses AES-256 encryption from the industry leader and a cloud based infrastructure for a high level of security and reliability.
Planned Departure is a revenue generating service and is poised for accelerated growth.
Much of our lives has transformed from physical to digital. Our personal communication has largely moved to emails and facebook, banking and investments are now typically managed online and even mundane things like utility bills have gone online. Paper statements, in any shape or form, are becoming a thing of past.
This transformation has made our digital possessions extremely valuable. Our digital footprints have huge emotional and financial value associated with them. Platforms like Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Google have become integral parts of our personal lives and indispensable for business. The virtual goods market has already reached 15 billion USD and with the rise of crypto currencies such as BitCoin, it is set to become even more valuable.
This continuous digitisation makes succession planning challenging as there are no paper trails for friends and family. Rise of nuclear and distributed families make this problem even bigger. Because of the lack of succession planning, online accounts can become an easy target for identity thieves - as no one is monitoring them. In US alone, identity of 2.5 million deceased users is stolen every year. It’s a huge emotional and financial burden for friends and family who have to deal with it.
Lack of succession planning also contributes in the billions of unclaimed assets all over the world. There are billions of unclaimed dividends, insurance policies and bank accounts. Lack of information to right beneficiaries is the primary reason for these unclaimed assets.
It’s difficult to keep information about digital assets in a traditional will because of the fast moving pace of the online world. Keeping everything up-to-date in a traditional will becomes a tedious process. Planned Departure provides a digital solution to handle digital assets. We believe that it is an essential complementary solution to the problems of traditional wills.
Substantial accomplishments to date
- We are fully committed and have bootstrapped till now. Our service is already live and is generating revenue.
- Planned Departure was selected by the London Business School to be part of the prestigious LBS Incubator program.
- Planned Departure also received the Founder’s Award from Deloitte’s Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship.
- Planned Departure makes it possible to leave digital assets to charities and, we are already working with a number of charities. We are invited by Age UK to showcase our product. We are also in partnership with the charity Older People's Day.
- We have agreements in place with many estate planners and probate lawyers, from the UK and India, to offer our services to their clients.
- We have been covered by prestigious media outlets such as The Economic Times, Yahoo Finance, Deccan Chronicle, Asian Age, NY Daily News.
We plan to have two different revenue streams initially:
- Subscription revenue from the B2C customers; and
- Referral income from organisations who have relevant products or services to sell to our customers.
This model is already working and we are generating revenue from this model. There are three separate plans for user to chose from:
* One time payment
We currently have users in all the plans.
We offer a 14 day free trial and plan to introduce Freemium model with a limit on number of digital assets user can store.
2. Referral Income
This is potentially a very lucrative area because of the referral commissions offered by providers of relevant products such as insurance and other financial products.
We are in the process of increasing our user base. Once this base reaches significant magnitude, we aim to have sufficient influence to get exclusive discounts from providers such as those aforementioned, pass these on to our users and tap into this revenue stream as well.
Use of proceeds
----> Mobile apps
----> Other innovative enhancements
----> Community building through social media marketing
----> Increase engagement with target market and communities
----> Relevant content generation and training
----> Raise awareness
- Business Development
----> B2B partnerships
----> Events (hosting & participation)
- Admin & Others
----> Trust set-up and perpetuity
- Explore expansion in other geographies (including India)
We would like to eventually consider the entire globe as our target audience, however, initially our focus would be on the UK and Indian market.
This product is targeted primarily at individuals from the 35-64 year age group, who are active online and have sufficient assets to be distributed to their beneficiaries. We believe that people from distributed families, small businesses and the expat community will find Planned Departure particularly relevant.
40% of UK population is in this age group. And 58% of this age group uses the internet. This gives us an estimated 15 million users in our targeted age group who use the Internet. It’s a big market.
The market size of the Indian market is significantly larger than in the UK. It has around 60 million Internet users in this age range.
Also, with the increasing penetration of the Internet and continued digitisation, the global market for this will surely only grow.
Characteristics of target market
Internet penetration is increasing rapidly. In India, for example, the number of internet users is increasing at a rate of 50 million people each year. Last year in the UK, an average of 36 million adults accessed the Internet everyday. Furthermore, the population as a whole is ageing with more and more older people using the internet. As a result, we believe that our target market is growing continuously.
The trends for an increasingly online population and increased digitisation inevitably make digital assets an important part of modern life. The US government is already advising citizens to consider social media in their wills and we expect that this advice will become the norm. Even the UK Law Society has started urging all the Britons to start creating their digital legacy. Recently, Planned Departure was mentioned in a seminar for probate lawyers hosted by Kings Court Trust. This event highlighted the need to have digital executors to complement a traditional will.
The market for products that solve this problem has already started. PasswordBox recently acquired Legacy Locker and Entrustet was acquired by Secure Safe. There are relatively few new entrants in US and even Yahoo and Google has acknowledged this as being an important problem. We believe that there is a unique opportunity for us with the market still in its early stages of development and no clear leader present.
We are planning to use both, B2C and B2B2C, routes to reach our target market.
For B2C, we plan to invest in social media, create communities and work on organic link building by partnering with bloggers. We are also building virality and will incentivise users who invite more people to use Planned Departure.
We also aim to utilise platforms including both Google and Facebook for advertising our product to our target market. We also plan to go down the affiliate marketing route and explore firms such as Linkshare, Affiliate Network and Zanox to increase our reach.
Our second route to market is B2B2C.
In this route, we would build partnership with relevant businesses and offer them commission to get their customers on board. We believe that this will be a lucrative proposition for many businesses as it will allow them to be part of the subscription economy.
We aim to establish partnerships with businesses in following sectors
* Estate and probate lawyers
Our service complements a traditional will. People who have wills are already thinking about succession and are more likely to find planned departure useful and relevant. We already have partnerships with wills and estate planning firms such as IWC and APS Legal Consultants.
* Funeral directors
Planned Departure can be bundled easily with prepaid funeral products. This will offer users something which can be valuable for them during their own lifetime.
* Insurance providers
We expect that this product could be bundled easily, for instance with bank accounts and insurance products.
* Finance Planners
Financial planners' clientele are often very diligent with their own personal planning and tend to have substantial assets that require taking care of. We expect that this group should also have a keen interest in partnering with us.
The legacy fundraising market for charities is worth approximately £1.98 billion every year. Planned Departure can be recommended by charities to ensure legacy fundraising because it allows users to leave their digital assets to charities. We are already working with Age UK.
This sector is still relatively niche and we believe that there is currently comparatively little competition in the markets that we want to target. Even in US - where this concept has gained greater acceptance and organizations have secured funding - there are only a few players and no market leader.
Our product is already live and with the money we are raising we expect to be able to expand even more quickly into our target market. We want to capitalise on our first mover position, capture users and build partnerships to protect us from any new entrants or competition. Once we have key relationships with estate lawyers, funeral directors, charities etc. in place, we believe that it will be difficult for our competition to access the B2B2C route.
We also believe our technical capabilities will become a key differentiator. We have a well defined technical roadmap and are confident that our innovative features, combined with mobile apps that we plan to develop for every platform, will make it difficult for competitors to catch on.
Apart from these, our most important differentiator is our team. We believe that our team has the right mix of technical expertise and business knowledge. We have an impressive track record of consulting with organizations such as Amazon, BBC, HMRC, IBM and have got patents, published our work and are well known in our professional circuits. Our co-founder, Komal has recently finished EMBA from London Business School and has got excellent connections in our target market from the LBS alumni network.
We are also proud of our university network and between both the co-founders, we cover three premier universities from the UK and India. Our alumni network from these universities is particularly strong and we believe will be of significant benefit for this business going forward. We have recruited our first batch from this network without incurring any recruitment cost. We strongly believe in our own ability to innovate, execute and utilize our connections to build this into a highly successful business.