Today, approximately one in five people around the world lacks access to basic financial services according to the World Bank. With more than 2.9 billion cards, 80 million merchants and 20 thousand banks around the world the reach of the Mastercard network is expansive and yet some are still left out.  Such a network creates great opportunity to deploy inclusive innovation at scale and bring those financially excluded into the digital economy.  But it also comes with great responsibility to infusing our approach to inclusion into how we develop and deploy technology, leverage and share our insights and ensure that everyone has access and opportunity in the digital economy.

Developing collaborative partnerships to ensure a more equitable economy

For Mastercard, building an inclusive economy means promoting financial independence and security, ensuring all small businesses can grow, assisting cities through an inclusive recovery, and helping close persistent racial and gender opportunity gaps.

To accomplish this, partnerships are crucial. We’re working collaboratively with governments, nonprofit organizations, community leaders, financial institutions, fintech’s, and digital platforms, applying all our resources – from technology and philanthropy to insights and expertise – to ensure individuals and small businesses can access and thrive in a more equitable economy. While the digital economy has improved the quality of life for many and lifted millions into the middle class, the acceleration of the accelerated shift to digital has also exacerbated inequities in our financial systems.

Measuring impact – 500 million financially excluded individuals brought into the digital economy

Ensuring the longevity of our financial inclusion focus means holding ourselves accountable, putting financial resources behind our commitments, embedding a focus on inclusion throughout the organization, measuring impact along the way so that we can rebuild an economic foundation that serves everyone, everywhere.

Globally, Mastercard achieved the goal of bringing 500 million financially excluded individuals into the digital economy, and has doubled down on those efforts raising the bar to 1 billion by 2025. We’ve also committed to engaging 50 million small businesses in the digital economy and have a concentrated focus of 25 million women entrepreneurs. To support these goals, we’ve committed $250 million over five years to support small businesses around the world and $500 million toward addressing the racial wealth and opportunity gap. And we are working with 200+ cities across the U.S. to enable digital financial aid disbursements, providing data science expertise to help channel investments to underserved communities, providing cybersecurity and fraud assistance, and increasing access to vital city programs.