international student credit card

About Us

What We Do

SelfScore is a next generation analytics-based lender that helps deserving but underserved populations gain financial independence through access to credit. We are currently connecting international students to fair credit before expanding to other products and populations.

international students in US
The next great wave of immigration has already begun

US universities are attracting the best minds from around the world to pursue degrees in STEM and business—there are now more than 1M international students studying in the US under F and M visas. Our nation’s motto has evolved from bring us your tired, your hungry, your sick to bring us tomorrow’s doctors, inventors, and CEOs, with two of our top technology companies—Google and Microsoft—currently led by former international students.

Upon graduation, most international students pursue careers in the US and work hard to stay here long-term. And yet financial institutions have been the slowest to respond to this growing population of professional immigrants and their needs. Despite demonstrating promise and responsibility (not to mention a $31 billion annual contribution to the US economy), lenders cling to outdated credit models that hinder their access to student loans or credit cards.

international students in US
SelfScore opens the door to the US financial system

We’re on a mission to help these deserving, but underserved women and men access proper US credit and establish their credit history while they study. The first step is to offer credit cards to international students through a special approval process that goes beyond standard credit scoring.

SelfScore determines international students’ creditworthiness using alternative data like ability to repay and predictive attributes such as education, major, cost of education, source of initial funding, and future employability. Our compliance framework has been developed in kind to meet the most stringent requirements set forth by the law, using enhanced identity verification and consistent lending practices to ensure the utmost safety and legitimacy. Though our practice is sophisticated, our borrowers’ experience is simple and frictionless. The entire process, from sign up through approval to account management, is optimized for any mobile device.

The key difference between SelfScore and other lenders is, as our CEO Kalpesh Kapadia explains: “We are measuring potential, not just risk.” As a former international student who was denied credit himself many years ago, he understands that the return on investment in a promising individual can be invaluable. Once we’ve opened the door for international students to access US credit, we plan to continue to widening that access for other underserved populations that traditional credit models tend to ignore.

Meet the Team

  • Kalpesh Kapadia

    Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder

  • Kalpesh Kapadia Cheif Executive Officer & Co-Founder
    Kalpesh Kapadia’s career spans 20+ years in the US and Asia, primarily in technology and finance. Prior to co-founding SelfScore he was one of the foremost analyst/investors in Wall Street’s tech sector. In 2004 he was ranked the #1 analyst in the US across all sectors by the venerable Wall Street Journal. In 2005 he founded Equanum Capital and successfully managed it through 2012. In ’07 and ’09, Equanum Funds were one of the best managed global equity funds in Barrons.com and Asiahedge rankings. He earned an MBA from Carnegie Mellon University where he is an active member of its Bay Area Alumni community and a proud member of W.L. Mellon Society. He also holds an MS in Industrial Engineering and Operations Research from New Jersey Institute of Technology. His personal and charitable interests focus on empowerment and upliftment through higher education. Kalpesh is a member/supporter of organizations such as Cato Institute, Santa Fe Institute, Foundation for Excellence and American Himalayan Foundation. He is also a member of Bay Area chapters of Commonwealth Club and the Churchill Club. He came to the US over 20 years ago as a young student and struggled to establish his credit profile. Through SelfScore, he plans to ease the challenges for this deserving but underserved population.
  • Michael Hallinan

    Chief Information Officer & Co-Founder

  • Michael Hallinan Chief Information Officer & Co-Founder
    As co-founder of SelfScore, Michael leads Information Security and special projects to advance the company's mission. Michael brings 15 years of experience in financial services and technology management. Prior to co-founding SelfScore, Michael was a management consultant at Booz Allen Hamilton (NYSE:BAH) where he advised leading financial institutions in New York City. He was also co-founder at Kaptur, which was acquired by AhaLife (ASX:AHL) in 2013. Michael is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, where he served as a Captain and Strategic Planner at U.S. Cyber Command. Michael holds a BA degree from Georgetown University and an MS degree from New York University. CISSP; PMP; CIPP. During college, Michael was an international student in Tokyo, where he had difficulty establishing a bank account and cell phone plan.
  • Cameron Gray

    Chief Technology Officer

  • Cameron Gray Chief Technology Officer
    Cameron is an engineer, entrepreneur, investor and advisor. For the last 15+ years he has served in Product and Engineering leadership roles at various early to mid-stage startups. Cameron was most recently the CTO at NeonMob, a marketplace platform for limited-edition digital content. Previously Cameron was the VP of Engineering at Mindflash Technologies and prior to that was the Director of Software Development for RealtyTrac, he was also the co-founder of Strangeloop Networks. He is an advisor at Transmedia Capital and has invested in and advises several early stage startups. Cameron holds a BA in Physics from Wheaton College (MA). He can be seen speaking on Agile Development and User Experience Design.
  • Venkat (Vinni) Bala

    Chief Credit Officer

  • Venkat (Vinni) Bala Chief Credit Officer
    Vinni leads credit strategy and operations for all SelfScore products, focusing on revenue and ownership of the product P&L. With 20 years of experience in business management & financial services, he is responsible for credit product development & positioning, portfolio performance, credit risk/underwriting, as well as customer experience and retention. Prior to his tenure at SelfScore, Vinni was the head of the College & Secured credit card business at Wells Fargo.  He has also held leadership roles within the Wells Fargo Student Lending division, and at CitiCards where he managed direct marketing for cash & rewards card products . He holds a BA from Creighton University and an MBA from Fordham University.
  • Pat Nicholson

    VP Marketing

  • Pat Nicholson VP Marketing
    Pat is a seasoned marketer, investor, and advisor, whose career spans 20+ years in technology. In 1995, he joined a struggling computer company called Apple. And, over the course, of 16 years he participated in and learned from the single greatest turn-around story in the history of business. At Apple, Pat held senior marketing roles in Apple’s software, education, and e-commerce businesses. Over the past five years, Pat has led marketing at early and mid-stage startups including Kno (acquired by Intel) and Zepp. During this time, he has also consulted and advised several seed-stage startups, including SelfScore. Having served as a marketing advisor since the company’s inception, he is intimately familiar with SelfScore’s mission, brand, and team. Pat holds a master’s degree from Stanford and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin.

carlos

Carlos Singh

Compliance Director

vik

Vikash Mishra

VP Engineering

aditya

Aditya Bhandari

UX Director

daniel

Daniel Cochran

Credit Operations Manager

jeff

Jeff Giacomi

Senior Manager, Business Analytics

tyler

Tyler Crea

Customer Service Specialist

rachel

Rachel Jin

Visual Designer

luvish

Luvish Katyal

FrontEnd Developer

niraj

Niraj Suthar

Software Engineer

vikash

Vikash Ruhil

Senior Data Scientist

maria

Maria Perez-Chatfield

Customer Service Specialist

Board of Directors

Board of Advisors

Investors

Institutional investors include Accel, Aspect Ventures, Pelion Venture Partners, Fenway Summer Venture Capital, SparkLabs Global Ventures and other investors include seasoned entrepreneurs, senior executives from the likes of Capital One, Deutsche Bank, Google, LinkedIn, Uber, and Airbnb as well general partners of major venture and hedge funds.

accel
accel
aspect
aspect
pelion
pelion
fenway
fenway
spark
spark

Partners

Featured Partners

celtic
celtic
tci
tci

University Partners

auburn
auburn
berkeley
berkeley
cmu
cmu
dartmough
dartmough
goldengate
goldengate
kansas
kansas
sjsu
sjsu
ucla
ucla
uhck
uhck
uic
uic
umich
umich
usc
usc
utdallas
utdallas
uwash
uwash
wsu
wsu

Marketing Affiliates

dealmoon
dealmoon
collegedaily
collegedaily
studentuniverse
studentuniverse
campussim
campussim
flywire
flywire
stupidsid
stupidsid

Contact Us

We’re happy to answer your questions

Call us at 800.418.7353 between Mon-Thurs 5AM-7PM PST, Fri & Sat 5AM-3PM PST

Email at hello@selfscore.com