What is the poverty premium?
People in poverty or on low incomes often pay more for the same products or services than people who are better off financially. This is called the “Poverty Premium” – the extra cost of being poor. The Poverty Premium is often dubbed the ‘double penalty’: in addition to not being able to buy many goods and services, people in poverty also end up paying more for the ones they can buy.
A 2016 report by the University of Bristol revealed that the poverty premium paid by low-income families is, on average, £490 per year – enough for a family holiday, children’s clothes and shoes, or keeping a house warm in winter. According to Joseph Rowntree Foundation research, 21% of the UK’s population lives in low- income households." - Fair By Design Fund
How is incuto involved?
In 2018, incuto were selected to be part of the Wayra, Fair By Design, accelerator programme. Wayra UK is part of Telefónica Open Future, a global innovation network open to partners, committed to the internationalisation and scalability of UK-based start-ups, including those founded by migrant entrepreneurs and by people from diverse backgrounds.
incuto is developing solutions to help tackle the poverty premium. These include "true" debit cards where funds remain protected, and sort-code & account numbers for traditional banking services including Direct Debits and faster-payments.
We also open the network of credit unions and community-based banks and lenders within our platform to the wider UK community, enabling members to access their accounts across 97% of the United Kingdom. This open access to community-focused banking allows everyone across the country to access an ethical form of credit and banking services.
Our environmental pledge
In addition to our bid to take on the Poverty Premium, ensuring free banking services and lower cost loans for all, the incuto team is committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2025.
We pledge to plant a quarter of an acre of rainforest for every Credit Union and Community Bank which connects to the incuto platform. We’ll also take steps to cut paper consumption by offering digital receipts for all transactions, and encourage our teams around the UK to reduce their own carbon footprint with our ‘Cycle to Work’ scheme.