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The future of fintech

Varo Prosperity Podcast

Banking Reimagined
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Featured guest

Colin Walsh

Founder and CEO of Varo Bank

Episode 02

Why Financial Inclusion is Too Exclusive

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We think financial inclusion is, well, too exclusive. Because of the broken wealth ladder and a lack of financial literacy, financial resilience is a continuous challenge for many. At Varo, we aim to shatter barriers and revolutionize the very essence of banking as we help to create a financial system that includes and empowers every aspiring wealth builder.

In this episode of Varo Prosperity, Varo Bank CEO Colin Walsh and The Aspen Institute Vice President Ida Rademacher discuss:

  • Barriers to financial inclusion and its role in promoting equality and wealth creation in the U.S.

  • Exploring the preconditions necessary for individuals to create wealth and address wealth equity issues Examining how a government-led plan for financial inclusion can help develop a more inclusive financial system, and the input of tech experts in crafting new regulations and policies.

  • Recent resources and research from the Aspen Institute on financial inclusion

Key takeaways from this podcast

  • The Aspen Institute aims to equip leaders with the knowledge and networks to solve financial challenges, including improving financial inclusion, by understanding and addressing the dimensions and drivers of these issues.

  • The five key conditions for wealth creation include:

    • Routinely positive cash flow

    • The ability to amass an investable sum

    • Access to consumer-friendly financing

    • Information and confidence to navigate the financial world

    • Innovative ways to protect and maintain wealth; 

  • Many Americans still lack basic financial stability, with 43% of adults making $50,000 or less having no emergency savings, and 42% not owning any stock or equities.

  • Aspen is pushing for greater access to financial services and rallying a coalition of organizations to urge the US government for a plan, in the hopes that collaboration between tech experts and regulators can improve household financial systems.

  • Aspen is working to enhance financial inclusivity and stability, and their upcoming wealth agenda aims to increase household wealth in America by ten times over the next 25 years.

Get to know Ida Rademacher

"The only way through to an outcome that improves the financial system for households is to have the difficult conversation." — Ida Rademacher

Ida Rademacher is a passionate advocate for financial inclusion and security, serving as Vice President at the Aspen Institute, where she leads the Financial Security Program and the Aspen Partnership for an Inclusive Economy. 

Her career has been focused on creating innovative teams, initiatives, and events, making her a leading voice in the field of financial health. Ida has contributed to the creation of several cutting-edge initiatives and events that have provided fresh thinking on building economic inclusion and growth. 

She has received global recognition for her work and has testified before Congress on numerous occasions. She has also contributed to various news and commentary outlets. Recently, Ida co-edited a book titled The Future of Building Wealth: Brief Essays on the Best Ideas to Build Wealth–for Everyone.  

A first-generation college graduate, Ida pursued postgraduate studies in economic anthropology at the University of Melbourne, Australia, and holds a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Maryland and a Bachelor of Science degree in anthropology and economics from James Madison University.

Connect with Ida:

Learn more about Aspen’s programs

Discover Varo Prosperity

Take a journey with host and Varo Bank CEO Colin Walsh, as he brings together visionaries from financial services, tech, non-profits, government, sports, and beyond to discuss breakthrough initiatives designed to help people live better lives.

In the Varo Prosperity podcast, we’ll explore how reimagined policy, regulation, and technology-first banking solutions are absolutely essential when it comes to paving the way towards unparalleled financial access and inclusion.

Whether you're a casual podcast listener looking to improve your financial wellbeing, a financial industry influencer, investor, or regulator, this podcast is for you!

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