Wednesday, November 09, 2011

AMEX to Invest in eComm Start-ups

American Express today announced a new multi-year digital commerce initiative designed to help identify and develop innovative technologies that will help accelerate the company's digital transformation and strengthen connections to a growing base of customers around the globe by investing $100 million in early stage startups in the digital commerce space.

"American Express is a 162 year old company that has continuously reinvented itself," said Dan Schulman, Group President, Enterprise Growth, American Express. "As we enter the next chapter in our history, we recognize the need to work with emerging technology companies to inspire change, encourage innovation, and ultimately deliver the best products and services to our customers."

The American Express digital commerce initiative will be managed out of the company's newly established office in Silicon Valley and led by Harshul Sanghi, who was recently appointed as Managing Partner, Enterprise Growth Group. Mr. Sanghi previously ran Motorola Mobility Ventures and brings a deep understanding of the venture community, as well as extensive expertise in identifying and working with promising early startups.

"The payments industry is underdoing a fundamental change as the very nature of commerce is redefined," said Mr. Sanghi. "We believe our global network of businesses and consumers, international employee base, world-class customer service and data analytics will provide a significant advantage to potential portfolio companies."

American Express' digital commerce initiative will look to make investments in companies focused on serving critical parts of the digital commerce experience, including loyalty and rewards, mobile and online payment management, fee-based services, security and fraud detection and data analysis.

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