Think Forward Initiative | Deloitte Impact Foundation


Think Forward Initiative - Caring for financial health

Together with our ecosystem we are committed to make an impact for a financially resilient society, powered by the Deloitte Impact Foundation

No less than 42 per cent of all European households experience financial stress. They have difficulty making ends meet, have problematic debt and are not financially empowered. At Deloitte we believe a problem like this should not exist. Caring for financial health is in our DNA. And for many years now, together with an ecosystem of partners in all significant sectors, we are committed to make an impact for a financially resilient society.

“Our society is better off when people can make sound financial decisions”, Peter van Loon, partner at Deloitte, says. “Finance is an important part of our lives. When people have control over their income and expenditure, they experience independence and wellbeing. Together with our ecosystem of the financial industry and the government, Deloitte as a thought leader is empowering people to make better financial decisions. Not only for the people who are currently in debt, but also for the households that experience financial stress in the future.”

Financial health is not a hype, Joep Arends, innovation leader at Deloitte, explains. “People worldwide are focussing more and more on their health. On every corner of the street you can find a gym or a healthy restaurant. Financial health should be and will be a part of this focus too. For many years now Deloitte is making an impact as a highly involved knowledge and innovation partner to projects concerning financial health, made possible by the Deloitte Impact Foundation. Without commercial purpose, the Deloitte Impact Foundation donates time and expertise. In a thorough manner and with the high-quality standard we know so well, we are committed to financial health.”

The Think Forward Initiative (TFI)

Together with AWS, CEPR, IBM and ING, Deloitte is partner of the Think Forward Initiative (TFI) since 2017. This open source platform wants to empower 100 million people to make better financial decisions and create a financially healthy society. First, by doing research for better insight in social and behavioural science to learn more about people’s decision-making. Second, by translating research insights into innovations, scouting and selecting start-ups and supporting them to scale faster in a 6 month accelerator program. And third, by communication and promotion to ensure the work reaches the people that need it the most. 

“As a business and innovation partner our role in the project is to scale start-ups technically and operationally”, Van Loon says. “We understand business from strategy to implementation and technical realisation. We have a broad network and are used to bringing parties together to solve complex problems, make an impact and create success.” Arends: “With over 100 Deloitte employees we have supported innovative start-ups with advice in strategy, tax, IT, operations and market positioning. And we do a lot of matchmaking, connecting the start-ups with our clients to help them both achieve more success in business.”

One of the reasons Deloitte employees are so willing to contribute to TFI, is because of its direct impact. Arends: “Our support instantly makes a difference. We implement improvements to a start-up, the growth numbers go up and more people are reached, impacting society and creating financial health. In a few years time TFI has succeeded to reach more than 62.5 million people in 18 countries. In the last 6 months we have helped 73,000 people in decreasing their unnecessary spending. 6,500 new users are helped in getting out of problematic debt. And 5,000 people are helped in creating a saving habit. Together we are making an impact that matters.”   

Scaling Program 2021

The Think Forward Initiative team has kicked off the ‘2021 Scaling Program’. The Scaling Program is a customized program for a selected group of innovative scale-ups to help them increase their impact by scaling faster. These scale-ups have proven to improve user’s financial health. By scaling them, we can bring that positive impact to more people across Europe. As TFI’s business and innovation partner, Deloitte is leading the Scaling Program, funded by Deloitte Impact Foundation.

Read more about the Scaling Program 2021.


Another young non-profit organisation that Deloitte is supporting through the Deloitte Impact Foundation is SchuldenLabNL. In the Netherlands, 2 million households already have payment arrears, 1.4 million of which are potentially in problematic debt. And the economic fallout of the Covid-19 pandemic is likely to push these numbers even higher. SchuldenLabNL is a non-profit public-private partnership aimed at fighting debt and the stress surrounding it. It does so by connecting the many local debt help initiatives scattered across the country, fostering innovation and getting their very best practices rolled out nationwide. Deloitte is supporting this initiative with strategy, organisation design and a dashboard for impact measurement.

Deloitte is always looking for ways to increase impact. Do you or one of your clients want to be involved in contributing to a financial resilient society? Please contact us via the contact details below. 

The Money Talk Game 2020

The Think Forward Initiative created Money Talk, a game that gets parents and kids talking about money. The ultimate goal is to improve the financial literacy of our little future leaders and help them to make better financial decisions in their future. So set aside an hour or so each day this week to play Money Talks, a game for parents and kids to laugh, learn and play their way to financial understanding.
Read more about the Money Talk Game.

The Deloitte Impact Foundation

Through the Deloitte Impact Foundation, Deloitte is committed to bring a positive impact to society. We share our core competences, knowledge and network in societal initiatives to make an impact in the fields of education & employment, sustainability and endurability. Read more about the Deloitte Impact Foundation and view our other initiatives.

Did you find this useful?