Cash Back, Miles or … Wine? Credit Card Rewards Are Evolving | Smart Change: Personal Finance


“You’ll see that more of these interest-based cards come out because issuing a card is no longer as big of a lift,” says Ben Reid of M1 Finance, a personal finance startup with its own new credit card that targets investors.

How well this flood of new cards performs is another story. They all face a crowded credit card marketplace with lots of competition.

“The challenge that, frankly, we’ve experienced is it’s really hard to break through, and it depends on your demographic,” says Matthew Goldman, chief product officer at Apto Payments, a payments infrastructure company. Goldman’s startup created the Grand Reserve World Mastercard, a card designed for wine lovers. He found that people who are willing to spend hundreds on rare wines tend to have high incomes and credit scores, which would make them eligible for a wide array of premium cards.

No matter what, however, these kinds of cards will shake things up. “The thing that’s exciting about startups is most products won’t succeed,” Goldman says. “But they’re creating new ways of thinking about things.”