Take a Chance on a Money Hungry Lion

Online lender adds games of chance to keep customers interested

Andy Spears
2 min readSep 6, 2022


Just last week, I wrote about how the Dave App was using games of chance to entice customers to take out more loans.

Now, it seems that online lender MoneyLion is getting in on the act.

To be clear, MoneyLion’s game doesn’t encourage or incentivize taking out a loan. It does, however, give customers one more chance to interact with their platform. Keeping customers regularly engaged will surely lead to at least some of them doing additional borrowing.

The trend here is clear: Fintech lenders with app-based interfaces want customers to be regularly using their apps. Period. The more customers access the apps, the more information they can collect about the customers and the more likely those customers are to take out new loans.

New loans mean more debt for the customers, but more profits for these fintech lenders.

MoneyLion, you may recall, was forced to give refunds to Minnesota customers after providing loans to customers there at rates up to 650%.

The name of the game in this industry is short-term, low-dollar loans. In the case of MoneyLion in Minnesota, the loans in question were for $250. MoneyLion is banking on customers needing a bit of cash over a short time period — and that those same customers are in such a money crunch they aren’t paying attention to the interest rate.

Once they have customers hooked on that first loan, it seems they’ll go to any lengths to remind the customers of their borrowing options. Heck, they’ll even offer a non-borrowing game of chance just to get a consumer to go into the app one more time.



Andy Spears

Writer and policy advocate living in Nashville, TN —Public Policy Ph.D. — writes on education policy, consumer affairs, and more . . .