Ocho the Owl - Our mascot
Why do we have a mascot for our brand?
Ocho the Owl exists to humanize the brand and deliver sometimes either complicated messages - insurance and financial lingo can be a little obscure - or talk about emotionally distressing life events such as car accidents, getting your house robbed, funeral expenses or financial hardship.
Additionally, customer journeys can be long and compusum. Ocho the Owl is here to make the customer journeys more fun and accessible.
Finally, having a mascot allows us to use storytelling to communicate our ideas - which is a very Hispanic way to relate with a brand. Ocho can take real life examples to get the point across. For example, he can explain to his grand-children why it is important to pay your auto-insurance to lower your rates, why a good credit score matters in the U.S. and what you can do with it, what type of auto coverage you should get and why.
Who is Ocho the owl?
The Abuelo Mentor
A kind, wise, hard-working, Spanish speaking, traditional abuelo from Latin America (he is from Michoacan, Mexico)
Ocho is a kind, wise, upbeat mentor that feels familiar and comforting to his customers. As a mascot he embodies a wise grandfather figure with ancestral wisdom. This is coupled with the playfulness of a family member (someone who supports you but knows how to push you and challenge you as well). There is a humanity to the Ocho mascot that makes him dimensional: He can be silly (not corny), grumpy (not rude) and extremely loyal. He has strong moral beliefs and stays true to them, allowing them to inform his decisions at every step. Protecting his family and teaching them how to build wealth are the most important things to him. He will share personal anecdotes and stories to illustrate the points the brand wants to get across.
Lessons/wisdom from life
Positivity & optimism
Inspiring, and being aspirational
Wise and kind
Comforting and energetic
Abuelo in touch with modernity
Authority & warmth
Loyal & pro-you
To the point / honest / transparent (tell it like it is)
OCHO the brand
How we speak
In Spanglish + Off-the-cut
We speak like many of our clients speak: In a mix of Spanish and English. Spanish is often used like punctuation or in the form of a CTA: ¡Por fin! ¡Eso! ¡Vamos! It’s off-the-cuff, reflects the spoken word more than the written. It’s relaxed, sometimes in slang and draws on idioms from various Latin American countries.
With authority + Warmth
The voice of OCHO, like the voice of its mascot, is supportive, inviting and wise. It celebrates the success of each customer, it provides guidance and counsel when called upon, it treats each correspondence as a connection that’s personal and with lived experience. It draws on its own lived experience to illustrate the need for insurance.
optimistic but aware
This voice is all about positivity. It’s fun, celebratory, encouraging, but it also is lived, experienced and understands the potholes that insurance often fails to pave for customers. The tone always stays upbeat, comforting and energetic—even when engaging in real talk with customers regarding the realities of financial hardship.
Pro-you! (Always an advocate)
The OCHO voice is always on its customers’ side. Loyalty is a strong character trait of OCHO (and we reward the loyalty of our customers with perks, cash back and lower payments). We advocate for our customers every step of the way—from opening their account, choosing the right plan, to filing claims.
To the point
The important benefits of OCHO insurance should never be buried by voice. Think about powerful copy in the headline but supporting copy often illustrates a core benefit of the insurance itself. Never bury the lede (0% APR insurance, only insurance that helps you build your credit score).
A FAIR START
The first credit-building insurance
Buy now pay later insurance
The only credit-building insurance
Credit-building insurance with zero down payment
Your Auto Insurance with $0 down payment
Auto insurance that builds your credit score
Your affordable auto insurance
Insurance made easy. ¡por fin!
Payments as low as $40 every two weeks.
Your future, insured.
Best. Insurance. Ever. Sin falla.
Protect the important chapters to your story.
Insurance that gives back all the time. No just when you need it to.
Build your future. ¡Dale!
Don’t risk everything. Insure what matters.
OCHO insurance: Bueno, Bonito y Barato.
We believe in the American Dream, but we also believe it needs to change. The American Dream shouldn’t be a race with winners and losers that depends on where your starting block is.
We founded OCHO to help communities of color and Hispanics achieve financial security and independence by making auto, home and life insurance more affordable and accessible.
OCHO empowers communities to build wealth from the ground up. We flip the system on its head and help you find, get and keep the insurance you need. We believe you deserve the credit for your hard work, so we’ll help you build it with your payments. We believe the system should work for you, so our payment cycles are based on your payment cycles. We believe knowledge is power, so we’ll guide you every step of the way with the tools and access you deserve.
We believe everyone should have the opportunity to build wealth. We believe it’s not just a dream.
OCHO is an online platform that offers Hispanic people the opportunity to purchase insurance products like paying for their car, home, and even life on a payment plan that’s customized to them. OCHO lets consumers pay what they can afford in increments matched with their ability to pay over time based on their credit score. Consumers can use OCHO’s technology as a means of building better credit so they can access other products such as loans and personal bank accounts at better rates.
OCHO. Helping low income people afford insurance, avoid down payments, and build their credit score in the process.
OCHO is a safety net that builds financial stability for Hispanic and immigrant communities, eventually helping each of our clients achieve their dreams.
How will we do it? / ¿Cómo lo haremos?
By creating the only insurance that allows customers to build and improve their credit score as they pay.
By financing our customers' down payments.
By advocating for our customers every step of the way. Y mas… (And more)
Creating the only insurance that allows customers to build and improve their credit score as they pay.
Financing our customers' down payments.
Advocating for our customers every step of the way. And more…
Customers may pay lower monthly rates by keeping their insurance and paying on time
Our payment plan reflects our customer’s payment cycles, every two weeks
Buy Now, Pay Later payment solution, we finance the down payment
Bundle auto, home, life insurance coverage into one simple bimonthly payment
Get free credit score and DMV report
Providing educational financial advice and content to customers
Reward programs (cash back when you pay on-time)
Workshops + financial training to empower customers to build their financial future
Our app will help educate + guide you every step of the wayg our customers' down payments.
Who are we?
OCHO was founded by three passionate Latino, Brown and Female entrepreneurs: Jaime Gutierrez, Akshay Buradkar and Lulu Luchaire. With more than 50 combined years of serving the Hispanic consumer with a passion for championing diversity of cultures and making the world a fairer place, OCHO was born out of a shared vision of advocacy.
In 2021 Jaime, Akshay and Lulu met in Mexico. They have experienced the pain points of immigration issues (and the financial impacts that come with them) and bonded over their mutual desire to change the mechanics of wealth building. They shared a vision of a financial product that could help the Hispanic community achieve the American dream.
1. A marathon, not a sprint
Somehow, the American Dream became a race with winners and losers. The wealth gap is getting wider and wider. We believe this is fundamentally wrong.
We believe we can flip the system on its head so that it works from the bottom up.
OCHO guides the community every step of the way with the tools and access they deserve, including:
Only auto, home and life insurance that builds credit with each payment
Option to buy now, pay later for insurance at 0% APR
Payment cycles that reflect real-life payment cycles
Free access to credit and motor vehicle reports
Educational resources from expert sources
We know it’ll take time to transform the system, which is why we’re in it for the long haul.
2. We walk the walk
Financial services are supposed to make life easier, but they rarely live up to their promises. The people who need these services the most are often excluded and pay a premium to access products we should take for granted.
The OCHOteam has lived through the pain points of our community from financial hardship to issues inherent in the broken immigration process. It is through this lens that we build tools to unlock wealth-building for all.
OCHO was founded in Mexico and the United States by three passionate brown, female and Latino entrepreneurs: Jaime Gutierrez, Akshay Buradkar and Lulu Luchaire. Jaime, Akshay and Lulu have dedicated more than 50 years of combined professional experience to bring fair, affordable financial solutions to Hispanics, immigrant and underbanked communities so that the underserved have access to the latest technology at scale.
It’s why OCHO is a safety net that helps to create financial literacy and wider access to the tools needed to build wealth and achieve dreams.
3. Unafraid to trailblaze
The insurance industry calls our communities “non-standard.” They price the insurance 50% to 100% higher than their other insurance, and they front-load as much as 25% of the total cost to get started. It’s almost like they want insurance to stay out of reach.
Entire communities shouldn’t be shut out of the financial system because they can’t access the products they need.
We created an unprecedented product in the insurance industry: We built a mobile-first platform to offer competitive rates and make insurance more accessible by letting consumers buy now, pay later for auto, home and life insurance. There is no down payment, and payment cycles are every two weeks and aligned with their paycheck. Unlike brick-and-mortar agencies or insurance storefronts, we provide price transparency and make it easy to compare quotes and the value of each policy.
OCHO also helps communities build credit with their payments. We understand healthy credit is fundamental to building wealth in the United States, so we built our product to make more possible.
4. We set a round table
OCHO was founded in Mexico in January 2021 and set up between two countries and communities: Mexico and the United States. Mexico City has emerged as one of the hotbeds for culture, creative talent and disruptive thinkers, so we opened an office to be at the heart of the cultural boom.
We are people-obsessed at Ocho. After all, we founded OCHO to empower communities. Of course, this includes our own team.
People are at the center of our strategic thinking, and we believe we should treat everyone as the owners that they are. We offer competitive salaries and give everyone stock options so that they have an opportunity to share in the wealth we’re building as we disrupt the insurance industry.
We also offer foundational benefits, not perks, including the freedom and time to recharge when needed with unlimited paid time off, full health, dental and vision benefits, and annual contributions to HSA accounts for those who opt-in.
5. Transparency as a starting point
Financial services and insurance are notoriously opaque. The industry buries us with difficult-to-understand terms, long contracts, and a lack of resources to make sense of it all. It’s no wonder it’s hard for people to know what they are paying for and what is fair and reasonable.
Transparency is the starting point at OCHO. We make it easy to understand insurance in plain language so that our community can trust they will really get what they are buying. We never hide behind industry terms or jargon, and we’re aggressive about rooting out the aggressive marketing tactics and borderline unethical practices that have become commonplace in the industry.
How does OCHO define and size the addressable market?
A prevailing problem in serving the non-standard auto segment is that policyholders don’t stay insured for very long. This segment typically lives paycheck to paycheck and often miss insurance premium payments, leading to policy lapsation and fees that further act as hurdles to getting coverage.
OCHO’s unique “buy now pay later” solution enables NSA customers to not only afford insurance (via financed premiums) but to also retain their policy (via affordable, bite-sized payments tied to their pay cycle). Moreover, by reporting payments to credit bureaus, OCHO helps its many credit-challenged members build their credit scores, which will drive future premiums down and make insurance increasingly more affordable.
Our founder and CEO Jaime Gutierrez has spent the last 25 years advocating for economic justice through building fair and affordable financial products for the underserved. Most of the current team from OCHO hail from his previous companies, Oportun and Aura, and have a track record of successfully acquiring the underserved market, especially Hispanic consumers.
Given that credit is one of the most impactful variables in insurance underwriting (and given the team’s background in designing credit products), we start by considering the addressable NSA market from a credit standpoint. Of the 100 million credit-challenged US adults, 40 million are thin-file, having little or no credit history. 25 million of these are Hispanic (our sweet spot – we approved 60-65% of this segment at Aura). Since the thin-file demographic is likely to be Hispanic and immigrant, they also overlap with other characteristics that typify the NSA segment (e.g. holding foreign licenses, gaps in insurance coverage, living in low-income zip codes).
Leveraging the team’s past experience, OCHO is well-positioned to market to, capture, and service the largely Hispanic, NSA segment.
The remaining 60 million have “thick but bad” credit and are also considered a part of the NSA segment. This population struggles to qualify for traditional credit products and face similar hurdles of high down payments, high brokerage fees, and unaffordable payment options in insurance. We expect this segment to also find OCHO's offering attractive and are able to address it due to our limited exposure to credit and insurance risk.
How are volume projections calculated and what is the confidence in the projections?
With a proven track record of successfully acquiring the Hispanic market (over 1 million customers acquired across Oportun and Aura), the OCHO team has a reliable playbook for scaling effectively and at a low cost. Not to mention, the 62.8 million Hispanic population is rapidly growing and accounts for 56% of total US population growth, a trend that gives us confidence in focusing on this market.
OCHO will reach this customer through a variety of acquisition channels. First, we will build out a digital distribution channel drawing insights from Aura (digital grew from 0% to 65% of application volume in 2.5 years). Second, we will build a network of third-party retail stores to generate leads, leveraging relationships with retail partners already built from Aura. Third, we will utilize a direct mail strategy pioneered at Oportun/Aura, targeting thin-file Hispanic customers (4-5mm pieces / mo.). Lastly, we will employ remarketing strategies and campaigns to follow up with unconverted leads. Our projections reflect the insights into customer growth and conversion we have gleaned from building out these channels over the years.
Once we bring customers onto our platform, we believe in being a partner on their journey to financial stability and success. At a minimum, that entails a good customer experience as provided by our dedicated call center and retail partners’ sales staff, both of which we have experience training. Beyond that, we will provide credit score updates and educational course content across a variety of subjects ranging from credit to insurance. We desire that our customers see tangible changes in their financial lives, including better credit, increased financial literacy, and lower premiums over time. By providing a stellar customer experience that seeks to delight, educate, and build trust, we wish to tap into our segment’s penchant for brand loyalty and word-of-mouth referrals, which have proven to be critical drivers of growth in this segment.