One CEO is helping his employees tackle their student loan debt in a big way. He is offering to match their monthly payments in an effort to help them pay off the balances faster.
Josh Udashkin, who founded luggage website Raden, wants to help his employees pay off their debts faster in the hope that they’ll be able to eventually start businesses of their own if they choose.
Udashkin went to college, law school, and business school in Canada, and he graduated using no student loans. Higher education in Canada is much less expensive than it is in the U.S. He credits that lack of debt with giving him the ability to launch his company in April 2016.
Raden is the “next-generation suitcase,” equipped with a built in phone charger and scale. The suitcase, which retails at $295-$395, has been an instant success, recognized by Oprah, and has accumulated a waiting list of 10,000 potential customers.
In its first year, the company is expected to make $12 million in revenue, and Udashkin has 21 employees between offices in New York City and Hong Kong.
Udashkin started the loan program in June, and there are currently three employees participating. An employee must show that she is paying $300 per month in student loans, and the company will match with another $300. The employees must also prove all of the money is being used to pay off the loans. The main goal is for the employees to pay their loans off faster, freeing them up to pursue their own passions and dreams of entrepreneurship.
"If you are at zero and don't owe anybody anything, you are free to make choices about whether you want to save for retirement or start a company," says Udashkin to CNBC.
Image Copyright Nicole Mays.