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American Express and CRIF announce an open banking partnership to improve the customer experience

American Express, a global leader in payment services and solutions, and CRIF, an international company specializing in credit and business information, as well as credit and open banking solutions, have signed a partnership agreement to accelerate the digital transformation of consumer and business customers by improving the online user experience for credit card applications and activation.

The partnership is part of an advanced approach to open banking that takes advantage of all the opportunities offered by the PSD2 Payment Directive, which is crucial to allowing financial players to share information, with prior explicit consent, in order to offer services tailored to its end customers (consumers and businesses), while also facilitating the financial inclusion of those without a credit history. American Express has therefore decided to put its trust in CRIF to take advantage of its services for the access, categorization and aggregation of payment and credit bureau data integrated within CRIF Digital Next, the open collaborative platform that accelerates digital transformation through a range of content, digital and value-added services, and a data layer and analytics that are unrivaled on the market.

This is complemented by the contribution of a highly specialized team, able to contact customers directly to help them access the service and obtain consent.

Thanks to these solutions, American Express is able to improve the experience of its customers and businesses, reaching an increasingly wide target for the proposal of a diversified offer of products and services, fully in line with customer needs and with the drive for innovation and digital transformation that it always looks for in its partners.

A project of this type is more relevant than ever in the “New Never Normal” era, in which digital transformation has accelerated dramatically, impacting the country’s main areas of operation (consumers, businesses, institutions). So, for businesses, having an ecosystem of up-to-date, comprehensive, and open data becomes the cornerstone of all decision-making processes.

The agreement with CRIF, a long-standing partner of American Express, is part of a path of innovation aimed at improving the customer experience and making it completely digital. Something we've always been committed to and which allows us to simplify and speed up those processes involving users, especially onboarding, which are still tied to static and formal controls, and not reliant enough on controls of a technological nature that are also provided for in the most recent payment directives and regulations. What’s more, the partnership allows us to reach new customers with targeted offers that meet their needs, an area we are very much committed to and that allows us to always bring value to our cardholders,” commented Giovanni Speranza, VP, Head of Acquisition and Insurance Business at American Express.

For us, choosing CRIF has essentially meant taking an approach to open banking on an international scale that allows us to apply a sustainable and completely digital process, including with business and corporate clients. Our approach has always been focused on our customers, and having a solution which allows us to gather the information we need to offer them custom solutions through a single touchpoint is critical. It also helps us to optimize internal decision-making processes and propose innovative products and services that meet the ever-changing needs of B2B customers,” added Carolina Gianardi, General Manager Global Commercial Services at American Express.

“We are delighted to have entered into this partnership with a leading player in digital payments such as American Express. We believe that the integrated solutions provided by our open banking platform and our team of CRIF BPO professionals will deliver added value to American Express and its customers through their innovative digital and customer experience features. Open banking, enabled by PSD2, can trigger the development of a new relationship with customers, in a context in which credit models are being redesigned and in which the profile of the prosumer (producer + consumer), which is more digital and open to innovative ways of interaction, is strongly established. It is therefore crucial for financial players to promote sustainable services and business models that meet the new requirements, as part of a “banking experience” approach,” concluded Elisabetta Panhot, Senior Director at CRIF.