Emerging Financial Markets Are Opportunities for CUs

Ten million households are unbanked and 24 million are underbanked.

July 01, 2013
/ PRINT / ShareShare / Text Size +

SundayACUC-1.jpg

Low- and moderate-income people who are either underbanked or unbanked, along with a growing U.S. immigrant population, present credit unions with opportunities in emerging markets. That’s the message attendees heard at a workshop Sunday at the 2013 America’s Credit Union Conference (ACUC).

CUNA’s ACUC, which started Sunday, runs through Wednesday in New York City.

The Emerging Markets Workshop—hosted by Cathie Mahon (above left), president/CEO of the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions, and Miriam De Dios (above right), CEO of Coopera—presented the characteristics of the emerging market that create opportunities for credit unions to seize. Coopera is the only emerging-markets company in the credit union industry with an exclusive focus on the Hispanic member.

Mahon said that 8.2% of U.S. households—or 10 million households—are unbanked. Also, 20.1% of U.S. households—24 million households--are underbanked. Meanwhile, one-fourth of U.S. households tried Alternative Financial Services (AFS) products in the past year, and one in 10 have used two or more ASF products.

“This presents an opportunity for credit unions,” Mahon said. “Community development credit unions (CDCUs) have developed tools to identify missed opportunities and develop strategies to better serve their markets.”

CDCUs have developed strong partnerships with housing, microenterprises, community-based organizations, local governments and the private sector, she added.

De Dios said emerging markets include underserved/unbanked, low-income, Hispanic and immigrant populations. Growth opportunities should reflect a credit union’s membership as well as increase membership and product and service use, she added.

“Hispanics are the largest, fastest-growing, youngest, and most-underserved U.S. market,” De Dios said. Hispanic market segmentation and the impact of immigration reform are opportunities and strengths for the credit union industry, she added.

Coopera’s mission is to partner with people, businesses and communities for new economic development, she said. Coopera and CUNA are in an alliance to grow Hispanic membership.

Coopera is finalizing a Hispanic Growth Return on Investment Study, De Dios said.

Be sure to visit News Now and Credit Union Magazine frequently this week to keep up with all the ACUC action in New York City. You can also follow ACUC on Twitter using the links below:

News Now LiveWire
Credit Union Magazine
CUNAVerse

Post a comment to this story

heroes

What's Popular

Popular Stories

Recent Discussion

Great article! Unfortunately, most employees don’t feel valued or appreciated by their supervisors or employers. In fact, research has shown that the predominant reason team members quit their jobs is because they don’t feel valued. This is in spite of the fact that employee recognition programs have proliferated in the workplace – over 90% of all organizations in the U.S. has some form of employee recognition activities in place. But most employee recognition programs are viewed with skepticism and cynicism – because they aren’t viewed as being genuine in their communication of appreciation. Getting the “employee of the month” award, receiving a certificate of recognition, or a “Way to go, team!” email just don’t get the job done. How do you communicate authentic appreciation? We have found people have different ways that they want to be shown appreciation, and if you don’t communicate in the language of appreciation important to them, you essentially “miss the mark”. Additionally, employees need to receive recognition more than once a year at their performance review. Otherwise, they view the praise as “going through the motions”. A third component of authentic appreciation is that the communication has to be about them personally – not the department, not their group, but something they did. Finally, they have to believe that you mean what you say. How you treat them has to match the words you use. If you are not sure how your team members want to be shown appreciation, the Motivating By Appreciation Inventory (www.appreciationatwork.com/assess) will identify the language of appreciation and specific actions preferred by each employee. You then can create a group profile for your team, so everyone knows how to encourage one another. Remember, employees want to know that they are valued for what they contribute to the success of the organization. And communicating authentic appreciation in the ways they desire it can make the difference between keeping your quality team members or having a negative work environment that everyone wants to leave. Paul White, Ph.D., is the co-author of The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace with Dr. Gary Chapman.

Your Say: Who should be Credit Union Magazine's 2014 CU Hero of the Year?

View Results Poll Archive