Curql Collective steps up investment in AI underwriting

DES MOINES, IA (November 2, 2022) — Curql Collective, the Credit Union Service Organization (CUSO) driving fintech innovation for credit unions, had already recognized the limitless potential for Zest AI, a CUSO, and innovator in automated underwriting powered by artificial intelligence – so much so that in 2021 it leveraged the Curql Fund I to invest in the growing fintech. Today, Curql Collective has announced it has gone back to the table to make an additional investment in Zest AI.

The additional investment by Curql Fund I will allow Zest AI to rapidly expand access to AI-automated credit underwriting for credit union lenders. Through its AI capabilities, Zest AI’s underwriting solution offers greater accuracy and lending insights to credit unions. The technology promises to help credit unions issue more loans while helping them mitigate risk and lend more inclusively. This capability will help credit unions gain a greater competitive edge in the lending financial services landscape. The solution has already proven invaluable to a number of prominent financial institutions across the country.

“Our goal is to help credit unions lend with confidence,” said Zest AI CEO Mike de Vere. “With more than 250 underwriting models, our tools also expand access to more affordable credit across credit tiers, making credit more available to those who need it. In fact, our technology enables credit unions to extend 25% more credit with no additional risk.”

Nick Evens, CEO and President of Curql Collective, said, “Zest AI’s powerful solution perfectly illustrates how technology and people are a perfect match. This solution helps credit unions live out the people helping people philosophy and help more people reach their financial goals. By using artificial intelligence to render more consistent and equitable lending decisions, removing bias, and streamlining the decision-making process, Zest AI is tranforming loan decisioning for credit unions.  We also appreciate the confidence being shown in the CUSO with this infusion of capital by Insight Partners, CMFG Ventures and several credit unions.”

About Curql Collective

Curql Collective is a collaborative ecosystem of progressive credit unions and innovative fintech. Through a family of funds including Curql Fund I, Curql Fund II, and Curql Accelerate, Curql strategically invests in the visions of entrepreneurs to bring transformative technology to credit unions to revolutionize how credit union members engage with financial services in the digital age. As the on-ramp to fintech collaboration and innovation, Curql connects credit unions with the future of the credit union industry. For more information, please visit

About Zest AI

Zest AI is a tech company on a mission to make fair and transparent credit accessible for everyone. Since 2009, we’ve worked with financial institutions to provide AI-driven credit solutions to their borrowers. Today we work with all types of lenders — but especially credit unions — to democratize underwriting automation and equitable credit decisioning. Learn more at and connect with us on Twitter and LinkedIn.


Merideth Miller
M2 The Agency

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