Lending Technology Provider CU Direct to Partner with Filene’s i3 Program

Partnership strengthens Filene’s values of innovation and growth for credit unions

May 7, 2019

Madison, Wis. – The Filene Research Institute has partnered with CU Direct, the nation’s leading credit union lending technology provider, to support, grow and enhance Filene’s renowned i3 program. CU Direct’s focus on innovation and its role in driving credit union excellence is deeply aligned with the mission and direction of the i3 program.

“We are excited for the collaboration and development of future credit union leaders through CU Direct’s support of the i3 program.” said Mark Meyer, Filene CEO. “With more than 200 innovative concepts and solutions from 260 program participants under its belt, Filene i3 has already helped save consumers millions of dollars, brought new efficiencies to credit unions and even changed a few laws.”

Filene i3 is an innovation and leadership development program populated with the best and brightest minds from credit unions across the country. The program is built to instill and encourage an entrepreneurial mindset in future credit union leaders. i3 participants work with Filene over a two-year period to brainstorm, test and launch products and solutions designed to address key challenges credit unions are facing. The program delivers a strong network of talent with over 30% of i3 graduates advancing to CEO or C-Suite level after participation.

“CU Direct is on the leading edge of innovative technology for credit unions, and we know this work is a collaborative sport, so it makes sense for us to partner with Filene to strengthen the opportunities available to growing, innovation-minded credit unions,” said Tony Boutelle, CU Direct president & CEO. “This is the type of innovative brainpower credit unions need to succeed in the financial services space now and in the future, and CU Direct is excited to support this important initiative.”

The Filene / CU Direct partnership is built on a shared understanding of consumers’ financial needs, insight into the ever-changing financial landscape and a deep passion for developing innovative solutions that will help credit unions serve more members. Because of these synergies, Filene is opening a talent outpost within CU Direct’s Irvine Campus, adjacent to their Innovation Lab. This physical link will keep Filene connected to CU Direct’s innovation work and enable Filene to be closer to member credit unions on the West Coast. More details to come on this talent outpost as Filene works to staff the location with new employees over the next 12 months.

Filene’s i3 program will begin recruiting participants for the 2019 class in June. Visit the Filene i3 web page to learn more about the application process and fill out the interest form to be notified first when applications open. To learn more about Filene membership, visit filene.org.

About Filene: Filene Research Institute is an independent, consumer finance think tank dedicated to scientific and thoughtful analysis about issues affecting consumer financial wellness, the future of credit unions, and cooperative finance. Founded 30 years ago as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Filene moves credit unions forward with research and incubation support. For more information, visit filene.org and @fileneresearch.

About CU Direct: For more than twenty years, CU Direct has been a lending technology leader, helping credit unions fund $213 billion in loans. An enterprise lending solutions and technology company, CU Direct serves more than 1,100 credit unions, 14,800 auto dealers, retailers and medical providers nationwide. CU Direct brings innovation and expertise to indirect lending, consumer and mortgage loan origination, point-of-sale, online marketplace, analytics marketing and CRM, auto shopping and business process outsourcing. The company focuses on four key areas: providing growth opportunities, creating operational efficiencies, delivering exceptional experiences and protecting credit union members. Connect with CU Direct on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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