American Express and Nova Credit –cross-border credit assessment agency– teamed up to launch a feature enabling expats and immigrants in the US to share their credit history with AmEx, when applying for a payment card.
Credit histories are already accessible for customers from Australia, Canada, India, Mexico and the UK. This will later on be covering to other markets.
How it works: They rely on Nova Credit’s “Credit Passport” technology to translate, with customers’ consent, their international credit history from major credit bureaus worldwide into a US version and share it with American Express.
If approved, cusomers ae instantly scored, and are sent a virtual card number. A plastic card is sent later.
Helping people with poor access to the US financial system. This partnership is meant to address obstacles faced by people newly installed in the US and who might want to be provided access to credit offers, e.g.: when moving in or for tuition. This service also enables them not to lose credit history built in their country of origin.
Boosting their revenue. With Credit Passport, newcomers are able to share their credit history with AmEx, which, in turn, allows the card scheme to expand their reach.
In the current American financial system, expats take over five years to build a credit history somewhat equal to the credit history they had in their home country. Based on Nova Credit’s technology, American Express may come to faster and more qualified decisions when processing card applications.
Other players are also paying much attention to expats’ needs: Société Générale via their “Ma banque à l’étranger” programme, for instance, or to a lesser extent April (which assists people moving temporarily to a foreign country).