SAN FRANCISCO, April 9, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- LendUp, a fast-growing financial services firm for the emerging middle class, has been honored as a finalist in Fast Company's annual World Changing Ideas Awards. The award honors businesses, policies, projects, and concepts that offer innovative solutions to the most pressing issues facing humanity.
LendUp is being honored as a finalist in the consumer products category, and joins other honored companies and organizations such as Alphabet, the Anti-Defamation League, Brandless, Visa, Patreon, Seventh Generation, the Thrive app, Unicef, and Walmart's Project Gigaton.
"The unfortunate reality is that the financial services industry just doesn't work for half of Americans. They are shut out because of poor credit, thin credit files, and income volatility. And the rise of the gig economy, employer-mandated schedules for hourly workers, and healthcare costs are exacerbating the issue, but we know it's a solvable problem," said Sasha Orloff, co-founder and CEO of LendUp. "We started LendUp with a bold vision to provide anyone with a path to better financial health. We're thrilled to be recognized by Fast Company -- it's further proof that a company can win when business and consumer interests are aligned."
Founded in 2012, LendUp is building a first-of-its-kind financial services destination for the emerging middle class -- who banks have deemed too risky. LendUp leverages house-built technology and powerful data analytics and machine learning models to identify potential customers who may be more credit-worthy than their scores indicate. LendUp's suite of products includes the mobile-first, socially responsible L and Arrow cards, which feature instant decision and boast "Cardholder Choice" ratings just short of a perfect 5/5 on Credit Karma -- nearly unheard of in the category. LendUp also offers free embedded education and short-term loans that provide borrowers an opportunity to lower their rates over time and, where available, improve their credit scores.
LendUp has saved borrowers more than $185 million in fees and interest, provided nearly 2 million free online financial courses, and improved credit scores by hundreds of thousands of points with its loans products alone.
"Fortunately for consumers, the era of crappy credit is over. We're proud to be a responsive, transparent financial partner who works on our customers' schedules -- not the other way around." continued Orloff. "As banks increasingly turn their backs on everyday Americans, we're showing that LendUp has their backs every day."
This award comes on the heels of a few groundbreaking achievements, including a research study with Experian, which, for the first time, studied the impact of including short term loan repayment history on borrowers' credit score calculations. The study found that inclusion of this information, currently not included in credit reports, could have a profoundly positive effect on people's credit scores and on financial inclusion broadly.
In addition, LendUp also recently concluded its Finance Forward initiative, launched in partnership with the Aspen Institute and alongside organizations like Pew Charitable Trusts, local government, and large employers, to solve for the growing issue of income volatility.
LendUp is a socially responsible fintech company on a mission to redefine financial services for the emerging middle class — the 56 percent of Americans shut out of mainstream banking due to poor or thin credit files. LendUp builds technology, credit products and educational experiences that haven't existed before, to help people build credit, save money and get on a path to better financial health.
About the World Changing Ideas Awards:
World Changing Ideas is one of Fast Company's major annual awards programs and is focused on social good, seeking to elevate finished products and brave concepts that make the world better. A panel of judges from across sectors choose winners and finalists based on feasibility and the potential for impact. With a goal of awarding ingenuity and fostering innovation, Fast Company draws attention to ideas with great potential and helps them expand their reach to inspire more people to start work on solving the problems that affect us all.