American Express reveals new technology initiatives for financial inclusion in US

American Express has revealed a series of new technological initiatives at SXSW Interactive Festival to improve financial inclusion in the US.

American Express has revealed a series of new technological initiatives at SXSW Interactive Festival to improve financial inclusion in the US.

Some of the technological initiatives include a new programme from American Express Ventures to fund start-up firms working towards financial inclusion, establishing a Financial Innovation Lab and sponsoring a documentary produced in partnership with filmmaker Davis Guggenheim.

American Express enterprise growth group president, Dan Schulman, said technology is rapidly changing the face of financial services, yet tens of millions of Americans are relying on cheque cashers, pawn shops, money orders, and other outdated ways to manage and move their money.

"We want to help modernise traditional banking and advance the next generation of products. By supporting new technology as well as the work of researchers and promising startups, I believe we can bring more people from the margins to the mainstream," Schulman added.

The new documentary programme is to showcase how technology can address the issues faced by nearly 70 million Americans, who are excluded from the mainstream financial system.

Guggenheim said not having a bank account makes it incredibly difficult to manage day to day finances, it often means credit cannot be established, and therefore cannot buy a home, finance a car, or take out a student loan.

"My hope is this film will shed light on this important issue and inspire everyone to work towards finding better solutions at a time when new technologies are opening up new possibilities to help fix this issue," Guggenheim added.