Amex to give away US$2.5m
American Express has announced the official start of its 2008 Members Project.
The online initiative invites cardmembers – but only those domiciled in the US- to submit ideas online for projects to make a positive global impact that American Express will fund with US$2.5m.
Non-Amex cardholders can also have their say, but only if again, they are domiciled in the US.
The company said in conjunction with the launch of Members Project, American Express unveiled new survey results which showed that 96% of Americans feel now, more than ever, the world needs great ideas to make a positive difference; 92% of Americans surveyed said that they believe in the power of ideas to help change the world.
This year, Amex will fund five winning projects; the top project will receive US$1.5m, the second place project will receive US$500,000, the third will receive US$300,000 and two additional projects in the Top Five will receive US$100,000 in funding.
“Every idea has the potential for greatness, particularly when a community of supporters gets behind it,” says Jud Linville, president and CEO of consumer services, American Express. “And it’s not just about ideas; it’s about all participants galvanizing their own personal networks—friends, family members, colleagues—to get behind the causes that are meaningful to them.”
Through August 19, 2008, cardmembers can submit their own ideas for projects and discuss, nominate and decide their favorite projects.
They can select one of the following categories that best fits their project submission: Arts & Culture, Community Development, Education, Environment & Wildlife, and Health. Photos, audio and video can be used to enhance project submissions on the site and anyone can go online and share feedback and insights about specific projects for project submitters to consider. This type of collaboration is greatly encouraged as submissions can be revised throughout the first four weeks of the program. In addition, there are new tools to promote projects and spread the word, including online badges, widgets and banners to be posted on sites like Facebook and MySpace.
Once the submission phase closes, American Express will work with an Advisory Panel of experts to review the projects and announce the Top 25 submissions on September 9. The winning projects will be those with the most cardmember votes, announced October 14.