The Subi platform pays employees cash for their accumulated annual leave if they need quick access to funds, as an alternative to using credit cards.

Under the scheme, employees with at least 20 days of unused holidays can apply to the platform for a cash payment in lieu of their leave entitlement.

Subi then negotiates approvals with employers under regulatory and compliance requirements and pays out the money.

Employers can then pay the cash amount back to the platform in four fortnightly instalments.

Cash access without interest

CEO and co-founder Max Moran (pictured below, left) told he envisioned an empowering platform for people who needed immediate access to their earnings.

“A lot of people are struggling to keep up with everyday costs right now and turning to a credit card is timely but leaves a person fighting high interest payments,” he said.

“There are 4.2 million Aussies who could cash out on their annual leave, but current processes are too hard to navigate for people.

"Subi can help people use their own money instead of turning to credit cards or payday loans."

RBA data indicates the average interest rate on credit cards is 18.14% p.a. while fixed-term loans are at 8.18% p.a.


Subi co-founders Max Moran and Glenn Rosen. Image via Subi.

Aussies not taking holidays

Data shows unused leave in Australia is at a record high, with almost 9 million Australians accruing 200 million days of holidays.

That’s an 8% increase from leave entitlements recorded in September 2021.

It’s estimated around 30% of the current workforce has a leave balance greater than 20 days.

A 2022 survey of workers found the most common reason for employees not using their leave was cost of living pressures.

What's in it for business? 

Mr Moran said the platform allows businesses to offer their employees an alternative to forced leave.

With Subi paying the leave entitlement up front, it can also help small to medium enterprises balance their cash flows, he said, rather than the potential shock of paying out four weeks or more of an employee's leave.

The platform has been in design for three years, working in tandem with common business financial management systems including Xero and MYOB.

Financial warning

But financial planner and host of the This is Money podcast Glen James warns it's best for employees to speak to their employers directly.

"While I understand technology can make things easy and solve problems, I'm generally not a fan of tech that allows you to receive your pay early or cash out leave," Mr James told

"I'd just encourage [people] to ask their employer about cashing out leave if much is accrued or to actually just take a break from work as you really do need breaks for your own mental health and productivity."

Mr James said he'd encourage people to look at managing their money well and not need to rely on such third-party services.

"You can't outsource your own behaviour," he said.

"If you used cashed-out leave entitlements to clear consumer debt, this does not solve your problems if you have not worked on the underlying overspending.

"I understand there could be a business case for employers to use tech to track and offload leave from their balance sheets, however, as an employer of people myself, I would rather my team take a break and be refreshed." 

Fee-free for now

Subi markets its service as free to employees and employers with an average turnaround time of 12 hours before employees receive their cash.

The start-up is looking to introduce employer fees down the track as the model takes off.

Mr Moran, a former teacher, said the platform is also working on additional financial education tools to ensure people who take their leave payments have the knowledge to optimise their use. 

"There is not a lot of education in schools about personal finances so that is something we are working at tackling," he said.

Image by Chen Mizrach on Unsplash