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The Financial Solutions Lab Unlocking Innovation to Boost Financial Health

JPMorgan Chase believes that technology can be an important tool to help Americans get on solid financial ground. The Financial Solutions Lab (FinLab) — a $30 million, five-year virtual lab initiative managed by the Center for Financial Services Innovation (CFSI) with founding partner JPMorgan Chase — is just one example of our firm’s efforts to boost the financial health of families and individuals around the world.

Through FinLab, we are harnessing the power of technology and the innovation of entrepreneurs with a series of challenges to identify and expand the reach of the next generation of financial products and services to meet the needs of struggling consumers. FinLab’s inaugural challenge in 2015 focused on solving consumer cash flow issues.

In 2016 FinLab set its sights on solutions to weathering financial shocks. The winners each offered a solution to this issue, such as a mobile app that provides financial advice, a service that offers digital alternatives to checking and savings accounts and a program that gives working families tools to achieve financial goals like saving for college or buying a first home. FinLab provided each winning organization with $250,000 in capital, support from FinLab operating partners IDEO.org and ideas42, strategic guidance from its industry-leading advisory council, and resources from founding partners CFSI and JPMorgan Chase, including the JPMorgan Chase employee mentorship program.

Since its inception, FinLab has supported 18 financial technology companies offering innovative financial products to help more than 1 million Americans improve their financial health — a tenfold increase since joining the lab. Collectively, FinLab companies have raised over $100 million in capital since joining the program. In addition, more than 100 JPMorgan Chase employees have volunteered their expertise and leveraged their networks to help the winners improve their products and increase their reach.

“The consumer impact of FinLab companies to date has been really astounding,” said Ryan Falvey, managing director at CFSI. “First-year Lab winner Digit, for example, has helped clients save more than $350 million. And Earn, part of the lab’s second class, found that 83 percent of its clients develop a habit of saving, with low-income households saving an average of $558 over six months. We expect this level of impact to continue with the next class of FinLab innovators.”

Based on research from JPMorgan Chase, CFSI and other thought leaders, the third challenge is seeking solutions to promote the financial health of often overlooked populations, including people of color, the aging, people with disabilities and low-income women.