College savings app U-Nest has announced an investment of $3.5 million from Northwestern Mutual Future Ventures.
U-Nest, based in North Hollywood, has created an app that helps users set up and manage 529 tax-advantaged college savings plans on their mobile phones. Traditional paper 529 plans are difficult to understand. U-Nest hopes to shorten and simplify the process so all families feel comfortable saving in the long term for education.
According to a press release from U-Nest, the funds will be used for hiring and outreach acceleration as well as product and partner development.
For Northwestern Mutual’s venture capital arm, the investment comes as part of a commitment announced in October to allocate $20 million into startup companies founded by women.
U-Nest was founded by Ksenia Yudina, a former vice president at the American Funds division of asset management firm Capital Group – the largest provider of 529 savings plans in the U.S.
Other investors in U-Nest include L.A. fintech fund Group 11 and Unlock Venture Partners in Seattle.