The former VW manager and social reformer Peter Hartz has founded a startup. Employees are to be able to save overtime and vacation via an app. Fintechs like N26 are the model. Hartz, the eponym of the unemployment benefit “Hartz IV,” is preparing the market launch of his fintech. The 81-year-old is expected to release a smartphone app with his company Timefonds next year.
“Testing is underway and will be completed by the beginning of next year. The final launch is planned for the second half of 2023,” Colin Altmeyer, CEO of Timefonds AG, said when asked.
The Saarbrücken-based startup is all about so-called working time accounts. Employees can use them to save up parts of their gross salary or payouts for overtime and vacation not taken. The principle does not work via a time quota, but the hours are converted into salary. For example, they can use the credit later to finance a sabbatical or retire earlier. “In this way, we want to enable people to organize their working and living time more flexibly, digitally on their cell phones,” states Altmeyer.
Time value accounts have been around for many years. Peter Hartz introduced them during his time as Chief Human Resources Officer at the Volkswagen automotive group.
However, the concept has not yet gained widespread acceptance. Timefonds CEO Altmeyer sees the high administrative costs as the cause. This is where Timefonds wants to come in with an app. Employees should be able to save up their lifetime digitally, and there should also be tips and information on how to prepare for a break of several months, for example. Regarding design and usability, Hartz and his team want to take their cue from successful apps in the fintech sector. Says Altmeyer: “Offers like N26 and other fintechs show quite well what is possible with just a few clicks.”