Start up story: Vinco Life

The humble wallet. A practical necessity to some, a fashion accessory to others, there’s no doubt that it’s a massive marketplace. But when you combine this with a growing need to manage your personal security, a gap emerged which Vinco Life was created to fill: A minimalist wallet which prevented credit card fraud.

The Vinco team is Ibbe (21), Sam (21) & Jalil (20), and the product idea was borne of Sam being a victim of RFID theft, a recognised danger with contactless cards. “Because Vinco wallets directly emanates from personal story of loss within the team, we have maintained a unique source of motivation throughout the campaign to give the community that seek simplicity what they truly need and want.”

“After countless hours of research we realised that armour plating was not required to block RFID beams. And that using cheap non-eco-friendly polymers and imitation leathers were not required. And that straps, toggles and hooks that would ultimately cause a nuisance, and were not needed for binding and holding the wallet in place.

 Instead we only needed three materials to make our wallets:

1-      Tyvek- A super strong recyclable material that resists absorption to water, oil and grease.

2-      RFID blocking film- A fine layer that rebounds, defends and blocks any illicit beams reaching our personal bank cards.

3-      Stitching- Elastic enough to accommodate 7 cards, but strong enough to last decades of usage.

All this at only 3 grams in weight, we are proud to call our wallet truly minimal. “

The Vinco wallet is a crowdfunded startup, on a platform where they needed to hit 30% of their target in order for the public to be able to fund their products. “For us it was not about making the money to reach 30%, it allowed us to carry out much field testing, reviewing and the collation of feedback from those who would be most honest with us, and with opinions we truly respected.”

“The biggest challenge came just after we reached the 30% mark on our crowdfunding campaign and the project seemed to go dead. Heads did drop and negativity began to creep into the camp, as it felt like we had maxed out on everything we could have to done to spread the word about Vinco.

“Through a surge of hard work from the team we managed to get on the newsletter for Indiegogo which pushed us on to success.”

Work is underway fulfilling the orders for the Vinco Wallet, and the team is already looking at what comes next. “Although we cannot give specifics, we certainly have the blue prints for the class of products we want to create and offer to our existing custom base and beyond. We will certainly stay within the parameters of the personal accessory market, specifically adding a fresh twist on cutting back all that unnecessary hassle that is still found is so many of our daily items, always with that added element of personal security.”

The team are very positive about their experience as a start-up so far. “The best thing is seeing what was once your own collective thought materialise into a product people believe and trust in. it makes our tireless work gain validity and reaffirms that our innovation has substance and can grow and develop further.”

But that doesn’t mean they’re finished with the Vinco Wallet just yet. “We want to tackle the source; approach entities that use RFID cards such as banks, local authorities, licensing agencies etc. Catching these cards at the stem of their flow and incorporating Vinco into the production/release of a multitude of cards would allow people to have their identity protected from minute one.”

We’ll keep a close eye on their journey – and on our wallets, in future.