Taking the Fear Out of Finance
We believe that financial wellness starts and ends with you.
You will be faced with a myriad of financial decisions in your life: buying your first home, determining what type of insurance you need, planning the cost of a family, and preparing for retirement – just to name a few.
CentSai brings actionable, relatable tips via real-life stories and expert interviews.
The seeds of CentSai — a play on the Japanese word sensei, or teacher — were sown after the 2008 financial crisis. Cofounders Arindam Nag and Doria Lavagnino, entrepreneurs and journalists, saw the drastic impact of the ‘fine print’ economy on everyday people.
Understanding your money should not be hard. CentSai gives you information and product choices to empower yourself.
We believe that storytelling paired with action is the most effective way to teach personal finance. That’s why our articles, written by real people with expert tips, will resonate. Our robust team of writers, contributors and editors is only the starting point of the conversation. Our goal:
Our unique round-up of experts, or financial “senseis” will give you another perspective on your finances. And our videos and quizzes are fun. Consider us your 24/7 money friend.
If you need to buy a financial product, we consider ourselves an honest enabler. You will find recommendations for mortgages, student loans, credit cards, robo-advisors and the like on our resources pages, ultimate guides and buyer's guides.
For full disclosure, we do receive a small commission if you decide to buy a product through our affiliates or our sponsored content. We only include products we can stand behind, 'cause hey, we need to keep the lights on!
We are as much about the wellness part of the equation as the financial. Here you will not find spreadsheets or formulas, but real-life examples of how your money mindset can help you reach and surpass your goals.
If you have an idea for us, we’d love to hear from you.
I started my career as a sportswriter in my teens in Kolkata where I grew up. Once out of St Xavier’s College, with a business degree, I joined the Economic Times in India, spending three years as an editor and as a reporter.
I joined Reuters news agency in Bombay in 1994 and in the next 12 years I moved to New Delhi, London and then New York where I wrote on business and finance. In 2006, I joined Dow Jones in London, writing the ‘Heard On the Street’ column for the Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones Newswires. I subsequently moved to New York as a deputy managing editor, launching new products for investment bankers and consultants. After a brief stint as head of content at Greenwich Associates, a consulting firm, I started plotting my entrepreneurship track, researching how finance and economics could be simplified for the common person. Months later, CentSai was born.
I hold an MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business, post-grad degrees in Applied Economics and Journalism, and am also a Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst.
I was raised in a family of entrepreneurs. It was through the grit and determination of my parents that I learned about financial wellness, commitment, and that anything is possible through hard work and determination.
I spent the bulk of my career working as an editor for glossy women’s magazines. I spent 15 years at Conde Nast and Hearst, honing my skills with some amazing mentors. I also had a brief stint at Working Woman – where I reported their annual salary survey – and became acutely aware of the complex issues women faced with gender parity in the workplace. Many women and girls are not financially empowered both in the US and abroad. The podcast, SheVentures, aims to help women tell their own financial stories through career and life pivots.
I believe that personal finance –or any topic– should be written to be engaging, social, and jargon-free. Money is an emotional topic. Any life event has a financial aspect, so why not use a mix of real-people sharing stories and expert tips to help people manage their personal finances? I am lucky to oversee content and social media for both CentSai and CentSaiEducation.
I graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Scripps College and I hold a master’s degree in journalism from New York University.
When Arindam approached me about joining the CentSai team, I was initially uncertain. However, the more I researched CentSai, the more smitten I became. Its goals and mission resonate strongly with me. Once I met the people at CentSai, I was convinced that it was the right move.
As the father of three millennial sons, I fully understand the importance of financial literacy and the difficulty of giving quality, easy-to-understand advice that isn't “boilerplate” or in their “dad's voice.”
Having spent nearly my entire career in various roles ranging from operations to sales at the premier provider of news and information in the corporate marketplace (Dow Jones), I take a long-term approach with my clients. I am very passionate about providing them with solutions solving their business needs. Most of my clients have been in the financial services industry, and as such, I have developed a great appreciation for the challenges they face as they try to enhance their client relationships by fostering better and more meaningful engagement. I am excited to be part of the CentSai team and believe that we can play a key role in helping empower people to improve their financial wellness.
When I got a call from Arindam, one of CentSai’s co founders, asking me to lead their product development, I was nervous, a bit scared and also excited. I have handled many overseas projects but this was a big one.
I came on board right from the start. The time difference between Mohali and Brooklyn meant my life needed some adjustments. My wife Ekta, who handles SEO for many U.S. clients and runs her own business, helped me get organize. My 3-year old daughter learned to adopt Doria and Arindam as part her own family, she saw me so frequently with them on video screens.
I love building products (I have a Masters’ Degree in Computer Science) but I fell in love with online education when I helped build WizIQ, a an online platform and virtual classroom tool for students and educators.
At CentSai I am responsible for market research, overall product strategy and corresponding roadmap, business and product planning, user experience, business intelligence and analytic, user base growth planning. I lead CentSai’s product management team and and working with the core design/ engineering teams to ensure the success of the product. If you have any questions or just want to say hi, its Sandeep@centsai.com
I am a user-facing designer who focuses on creating a meaningful experience to those visiting our site. CentSai’s mission to make finance more approachable attracted me because it directly aligns with my design approach in breaking down a complex problem into simple and actionable solutions. One of my favorite parts about working at CentSai is the various opportunities to work collaboratively with other teams. I am excited for more challenges and opportunities to grow. When I’m out of work, I usually indulge in trying out exotic snacks and going on spontaneous late-night movie runs with friends.
Born and raised in Ireland, I graduated from Trinity College, Dublin, with a double major in English literature and French. It turns out not to be as useless of a degree as it may seem!
I began my editing career at a college newspaper, and lo my passion for journalism and current events was born — particularly relating to the hardships of immigration and the difficulties of translating Irish slang into American English; topics which, sadly, I know all too well.
I was surprised and delighted to find that my skills could be integrated with a medium that focuses on financial education. I’m a big fan of short stories, drag queens, and email marketing.
I ran a successful financial planning practice for 17 years, advising a diverse group of clients and also training and developing financial advisors. A few years ago I realized that while helping individuals with their finances had its rewards, my sphere of influence and contribution to people’s financial well-being could be bigger. I sold my practice and went back to school to obtain a Ph.D. in Management in Finance. By working as a researcher and consultant in the areas of financial literacy and corporate social responsibility I feel I can potentially contribute to improving people’s financial conditions on a much greater scale. And have more fun at the same time!
I’m an editor and writer based in Brooklyn. I’ve spent 30 years in publishing (mainly in magazines) as a copy editor, copy chief, and managing editor. I’ve worked at too many titles to count and seen this industry change in ways I never dreamed possible. Since I’m not a finance person, I read and edit CentSai articles as the reader would — and in the process, help to make engaging content even more relatable. In my spare time, I enjoy spoiling my niece and nephew, sitting on the beach, cooking, and growing my Instagram (@auntjocooks).
I've worked as a culture and arts journalist for five years, serving previously as a managing editor, staff writer, and contributor for a number of print and web-based outlets. While my focus has primarily been in music journalism, I think what I enjoy most about writing has been unpacking difficult or abstract subjects and presenting them in ways that are easily understood. I’m glad to be a part of the CentSai team and to help with its mission to demystify financial literacy, while I learn how to overcome my addiction to buying overpriced vinyl records.
You can call me whatever you want, give me a variety of titles, entice me with anything, but I will always be a web designer. When I am not working I am surfing around to see the best fonts and colors in vogue. What are millennials looking at? What’s a good design? What’s a great design? These questions point at me all the time. I am always trying to seek answers. I started my professional career as a web designer 7 years ago with a company near Chandigarh, India. I was able to dabble around with a variety of technologies.
After spending almost 4 years in that company I decided to start freelancing on full-time basis as western corporations increasingly started to outsource critical creative work to India. I learned how to better manage projects and get even more creative.
For me CentSai has been a great experience in terms of trying out new things. It’s more than a website, more multi-dimensional platform that will have its own community. Fun stuff.
Currently I am working on providing a fine user experience (UX), interchangeably using a variety of tools such as User Interface Design & Development (UI), Responsive Designs, HTML5, CSS3, jQuery, Twitter Bootstrap, Wireframing, Branding and CMS Theme Integration.
I am a software engineer with a master’s degree in computer technology.
I have experience working with PHP and WordPress-based websites. I am always looking for ways to integrate my skills with my interests.
I had no idea how challenging my work at CentSai would be when Sandeep, one of CentSai’s co-founders, spoke to me about a position while I was at my brother’s wedding. My life changed permanently from the first day—working in a fast-paced environment where I am learning new things constantly. I enjoy being a part of the financial education industry and a dynamic team.
Before CentSai, I worked for Live Satyamtech as a team leader. There were 10 members in my team, and we were directly responsible for developing new websites and maintaining them.
I graduated from Limerick Institute of Technology, Ireland, with a bachelor of business studies in marketing and management. The most interesting part of my course to me was learning from case studies how companies develop and grow over time. After graduation, I decided to make the move to New York and I came across CentSai. Since then I have been able to witness the evolution of a company over time, which has been significant.
At CentSai, I’m excited to not only be a part of such a fast-paced business environment but also to learn how to manage my personal finances through the site’s teachings.
One of the major reasons I chose to join CentSai is my passion for trying to better our society at the community and individual levels. Many Americans struggle with understanding complex financial terms as well as many products available in the market. I hope to provide a “win-win” proposition to our partners and then ultimately to their customers. An environment where more Americans thrive benefits all of us. In working with many financial institutions in my career, I take the “long” approach to enable them to flourish by driving meaningful customer interactions, experiences, and content. I’m excited to be part of the great team at Centsai.
I am an experienced business leader competent in product marketing, product management, and business development with a track record of making and marketing multimillion-dollar product lines as well as monetizing business alliances. As an entrepreneur, I have worked to understand and prioritize customer problems, and then to connect all aspects of a business to profitably deliver innovative and distinctive solutions. At CentSai, I seek and invest in strategic partnerships that integrate CentSai’s unique financial literacy content and services into learning and marketing channels that help students, individuals, and families experience the security and confidence that comes from making smart money decisions. I hold an executive MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business and a bachelor’s degree from St. Stephen’s College (University of Delhi, India) in mathematics, physics, and chemistry.
I started working at CentSai as an intern and was captivated by the ability for financial content to empower readers and elevate their lives.
I am currently a senior at Rutgers Business School majoring in Marketing. In my free time I love hanging out with my roommates, trying new things, and walking my dog.
I was born in Colombia, but raised in Spain. I attended college in London and graduated with a bachelor of science in economics. My journey started when I volunteered in Uganda to help local entrepreneurs grow their businesses. This experience in Uganda made me realize that by educating ourselves about real-life challenges, such as our own finances, we can make an impact on our own lives and in the community.
After college I decided to move to New York, and I came across Arindam, who introduced me to CentSai. I was amazed by the work CentSai and the whole team does. For me, it is important to keep educating myself and this is one of the advantages I have working at CentSai.
In my free time, I love playing volleyball, traveling, painting, and helping young students who need a hand with their careers.
I am a senior psychology student at the Macaulay Honors College. I started writing in 2008, started taking it seriously in 2012, and began to look into editing in 2018 at the advice of a friend. Since then, I have been involved with a number of online publications. In my free time, I enjoy sports, books, creative writing, and hanging out with my pets.
I am currently studying for my B.F.A. in animation at the School of Visual Arts. I have also done freelance design and animation jobs, from making posters to working on short-form animated films. In my spare time, I love hiking in the mountains, going to parks to watch the dogs, and playing music.
I am an M.S. candidate in strategic communications at Columbia University, and hold past degrees in business administration and integrated marketing communications. Prior to joining Columbia and CentSai, I was assistant head of content strategy and business development at a media firm in India and was responsible for overseeing global magazines Iron and Steel Review and Metal Asia for three years. I am passionate about singing and reading — and I love dogs! I am also an active board member of my school’s Indian Students Association, where I monitor and conduct alumni-related events.
I am currently a rising junior in high school. I have a strong interest in math, business, and finance. I was born and brought up in NYC, and have a passion for all New York sports teams (although painful). I enjoy listening to music, painting, swimming, and running. I consider myself a foodie and love traveling and trying different cuisines.
As a recent college graduate, I am a perennially optimistic millennial with a passion for rowing and words. I am responsible for nurturing our social media accounts, and I'm happy to say I've been more successful in this endeavor than I was in keeping my Tomagotchis alive. I am also involved with our business development, primarily related to CentSai's web presence and expansion. My blogging work focuses on millennial finance, including student loans, homeownership and budgeting. I have two Scottish Fold kittens, despite hating cats, and I enjoy hazelnut lattes with my financial education.
I am the go to personal finance expert for educated, aspirational moms who want to recapture their life passions, earn more, reach their goals, and take on a more active financial role in their families. Named the Best Contributor/Freelancer for Personal Finance in 2014, my writing and expertise have been featured in dozens of notable publications and in national media. I am also the founder of www.catherinealford.com, an award-winning personal finance blog that I created in 2010 and the innovator behind the web’s most comprehensive course on how to Get Paid to Write for Blogs.
I like to learn about money the easy way, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t had my fair share of slip-ups. I’m a mama, fluent writer and a creative who’s determined to work my way out of debt accumulated from my journalism degree and have my cake it eat it too when it comes to my finances. I’m passionate about helping others evoke change in their finances and improve their lives. I chronicle my debt journey and my progress toward achieving a more balanced life on my blog, MyDebtEpiphany.com.
Hi, I am currently a freelance writer in Atlanta looking at financial issues that affect everyday life of millennials. I was an idealist for most of my twenties, completing a term with the AmeriCorps in in St. Louis that somehow led to me landing a job to teach English in an Ethiopian-Israeli community, south of Tel Aviv, Israel. I met my partner in Jerusalem and she surprised me with a proposal while we were overlooking the city and got married in Los Angeles in 2014. I have a BA in History & Women’s and Gender Studies and a Master’s in Social Work with a concentration in non-profit management.
I’m a normal English ‘dude’ who loves to save money – especially with coupons! I’ve had an interest in personal finance since I was 15 and it helped me get my family out of rough times by money-saving and clever financing. This has led to doing a few crazy things… including getting $1,000 worth of groceries for just 10 cents and even flying over 1,000 miles roundtrip to a different country to save just $14 on train fares. My hobbies include eating, travel and seeing the look on a cashiers face when you hand over 500 coupons… it’s a picture!
I founded The Frugal Feminista to help women radically transform their relationship with money and themselves. I want to break the silence and shatter the taboo that shrouds how women think about wealth and worthiness.
Kayla is a mid-20s single girl living in Kansas, USA. She graduated from an in-state university in 2012 with a little over $8,000 in student debt. The rest of her debt came from my terrible shopping habit and the purchase of her first home. Her desire to get out of debt is what first interested her in writing about personal finance. Now her passion for personal finance has become her full-time job! You can join Kayla on her journey out of debt and clutter by following along with her blog, Shoeaholicnomore.com.
Hi I’m a personal finance blogger and founder of MoneyManifesto.com. I hold a Certified Public Accountant license issued by the Commonwealth of Virginia. Together with my wife, we have paid off over $80,000 of student loan debt in less than three years. I aim to share as much financial knowledge as possible to help others move forward on their financial journey and avoid the debt trap. When I’m not writing about personal finance, I can be found taking a short trip to the local beach.
I am a 20-something new mom, dog lover, and freelance writer/solopreneur living in Chicago. When I returned from my honeymoon, I was devastated to learn that my husband lost his job. We were also in debt. But we have been fighting back to get in the black while learning how to make great financial decisions for the future. You can find my personal story at fitnpoor.com and my site for parents wanting to raise money-smart children at everylittlecent.com.
As a trainer my goal is to build better humans, physically and financially. Fitness is my passion and I am using this as a vehicle to teach, motivate, and inspire others to build a solid foundation of health and wellness. I will challenge you to explore your inner greatness, and will help you achieve your goals. Check out what I have going on here at The Academy.
“Dream big, then let’s figure out how to make it happen.”
Kim is a Texan native who has lived in Kansas City, Missouri with her husband and daughter for almost five years. While she loves being at the beach and traveling, she spends her days as a full-time virtual assistant and mother. Balancing entrepreneurship and motherhood isn’t always easy, but she’d take that over a desk job any day. You can find her at The Entrepremomer, where she shares her journey and talks about how she juggles it all!
Pia Catton is a freelance writer and editor. In 2017, she launched the startup Dance.com, where she is the editor in chief. From 2010 to 2016, she was a reporter at the Wall Street Journal, covering nonprofits, performing arts, and sports. She has served as the features editor of Politico and the culture editor of the New York Sun. In her six years at the Sun, she served as a reporter, dance critic, and features editor before editing the arts coverage. She has written for numerous publications, including Playbill, the Real Deal, Biography.com, the New York Post, the Baltimore Sun, ArtNews, City Journal, and the Weekly Standard.
I grew up in what many would consider to be a poor household. My family has been homeless at least twice in my 20-year lifetime. Those hardships have uniquely shaped the way I look at financial issues. I have a vast knowledge of public programs for low-income and homeless people, as well as a passion for personal finance. Due to my family's financial situation, I was awarded several grants that have allowed me to attend college debt-free if I so choose. I am currently enrolled at Northern Kentucky University, where I’m majoring in organizational leadership. My goal is to break my family's cycle of poverty using one of the few things that nobody can take away from me: education.
Armed with $5, I skipped down to the local bank to open a savings account. The bank manager gladly accepted my money. I was just 10. It was my first foray into the world of personal finance. The experience empowered and taught me that I can be in control of my money – and it’s a philosophy I’ve carried my whole life. Money should never control you. But for many people, young or old, poor or wealthy, and educated or not, money is their overlord. Most are ill-prepared to make the right choices about their finances. That’s why CentSai’s mission to promote financial literacy is so crucial. As CentSai’s first columnist, I’m here to demystify the complex world of financial products and services, while providing simple, easy-to-understand tips, tools, strategies and solutions to help you be the master of your money. My love of all-things personal finance is backed by decades of journalism experience in broadcast, digital, newswires and print. I spent the bulk of my career with the Associated Press and the Wall Street Journal as a reporter, editor and manager. In my free time, I enjoy playing my Telecaster loudly as well as biking and hiking with my wife and two young boys.
I am a technology strategist, product builder, and start-up adviser based out of the San Francisco Bay Area, as well as a serial intrapreneur with 15-plus years of experience. I excel at driving end-to-end development of multiple innovative B2B user-centric SaaS and Mobile (native iOS, Android) products, having scaled to more than $100M revenue in five years and won two acquisitions by Oracle & Software AG. I also have built several emerging technology innovation product teams, involving product managers and engineering teams, across the world, and am an expert adviser and strategist on products leveraging IoT, drones, blockchain, and chatbots for enterprises.
Additionally, I enjoy mentoring and advising early-stage founders and leadership teams building emerging technology start-ups. I obtained my computer science degree from India and an MBA in entrepreneurship and marketing from the University of California, Davis.
I’m the quintessential start-up and growth-marketing professional. For three decades, I’ve been involved in a notable sequence of early-stage-company ventures and successes. My in-the-trenches experience makes me invaluable in assisting new ventures realize their market potential. I’ve helped fast-growth companies such as PropertyBridge, Wallaby Financial, Marqeta, Xircom, and Gearworks reach an aggregate market value of close to $5 billion. Beyond my strategic role as a consultant chief marketing officer, I’m actively involved in branding, user acquisition, partner development, social media and content, public relations, and channel programs. I also help early-stage companies raise funding through an active network of angels, venture capital funds, and institutional investors. My current roster of clients includes Bankrate, UrgentPoint, The Build Card, and inerTRAIN.
I have worked in transactions for longer than I care to admit, with issuers, networks, merchants, processors, and fintech firms. My expertise comprises strategy, marketing, new products, operations, and finance at companies including American Express and Mastercard; currently, I am advising several fintech startups.
I am a partner at PayGility Advisors, which helps firms navigate the changing world of payments, and president of NYPAY.org, where payment innovators meet to learn and network. I am also leading a US Payments Forum team on Card Not Present (CNP) fraud.
My recent work includes due diligence on a merger target, bringing an Indian fintech to the U.S., finding profitable markets for a mobile payment platform, and reducing acceptance costs for several merchants.
I am an attorney and have been in the start-up space for years. My early dreams of becoming a public defender did not go the distance after the 2008 economic crisis. I took up the role of a general counsel for a new company and fell in love with working new firms, their energetic owners.
In 2014 I started my own firm, focusing on start-ups. A year and 50 clients later I met Doria and Arindam and have been working with them since. I believe CentSai provides sorely needed information and support, especially to young adults. I have seen them grow and how they have been developing their platform and I am have no doubt CentSai will be a household name in a short period of time.I live in Jersey City with my wife Carol and and our pet rabbits. In my coveted spare time I enjoy running, gardening, and hoping against hope that this will be the year the Washington Redskins will make it to the Super Bowl.
It’s hard for me describe myself with full clarity because I am still in beta, meaning: still learning. Over the years I have seen many people make wrong choices about money or are confused. For me to be associated with CentSai was a no-brainer. I have a day job at a bank but I spend much of my free time looking at education platforms, designs, and mulling over creative ways to help teach. By nature I am a builder. I love to create websites, build cars, even help craft furniture. Despite a career in banking, my friends call me creative, whenever I can I try to infuse a bit of art in everything I do. I began my career in financial services, working for Greenwich Associates where I met one of CentSai’s cofounder Arindam.
I am working on the visualization of data and various widgets that find their place on CentSai’s platform. If you have any suggestions on how to further improve some of our functionalities or introduce new ones, drop me an email at keenan@Centsai.com
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CentSai may be an affiliate for products that we recommend and may receive compensation from the companies whose products we recommend on this site. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are our own, and not those of any partner [bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline], or other partner. This content has not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.