Startupbootcamp FinTech Dubai successfully concludes third cycle by accelerating 11 start-ups

Dubai, 1 March 2021 – The third cycle ofStartupbootcamp FinTech Dubai’s industry focused accelerator programme has successfully concluded during the annual Demo Day, with 11 start-ups pitching ideas to investors, corporate partners, mentors, experts and general audience.

Startupbootcamp FinTech Dubai was launched in 2018 in partnership with Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), VISA, Mashreq bank and HSBC and to date has successfully graduated more than 30 FinTech start-ups in the fields of payments, lending and Islamic digital banking across three cohorts.

Supporting Dubai’s 2021 plan to become a pivotal global hub for financial services, innovation and technology and the program partners’ vision to drive the future of finance, Startupbootcamp FinTech Dubai’s Demo Day has swiftly become one of the most highly anticipated events on the industry calendar for founders and entrepreneurs as well as corporate partners seeking to discover the next generation of financial innovation firms.

The Demo Day was exclusively live-streamed from the recently launched PwC Experience Centre located in Dubai; providing attendees with an unforgettable immersive hybrid experience. The Demo Day concludes an annual intensive three-month growth programme to support the business growth of the participating start-ups and prepare them for operations and future scaling.

The event launched with an opening note from Lars Buch, CEO of Rainmaking in MENA & Russia, providing inspiration and anecdotes from his tenure at one of the world’s most active industry-focused startup accelerators. This was followed by a keynote from Moussa Beidas, Director of Ideation at PwC Dubai who shared words of wisdom with the founders of the 11 firms participating in Demo Day.

The 11 start-ups graduating from the programme have benefitted from mentorship and access to comprehensive resources, insights, technology and world-leading expertise during the three months of the programme, enabling them to secure proof-of-concepts to validate their business models. With the start-ups predominantly at seed stage, raising between USD 250,000 and USD 1.8 million and the programme’s strong focus on developing partnerships between start-ups and corporates and building investor relationships, the Demo Day provided a solid springboard for start-ups to commence 2021.

Ranging from financial wellness app for Gen Zs to an Insurance-as-a-Service platform which allows to purchase insurance in less than eight seconds – all startups have the ability and ambition to make the finance and banking sector in MENA smarter, more innovative and agile.

Mohamad Sabouneh, the Managing Director of Startupbootcamp FinTech Dubai commented: “Over the past 12 weeks the startups have perfected their business models, implemented new go-to market strategies, streamlined the operations, among many other growth areas. I’m confident in their continuous success and we, at Startupbootcamp FinTech Dubai, are very excited for the journey ahead for this cohort.”

The 11 startups include:

  • Absolute Collateral (UK): a securitized trading platform for financial institutions.
  • Aura Technologies (UAE): an enabler for non-insurance businesses to distribute insurance to their customers.
  • Compliance as a Service (UK): a RegTech firm providing compliance management software to FinTechs and challenger banks.
  • Finllect (UAE): a financial wellness app for Gen Zs to build credit, automate their finances, and prequalify for financial products.
  • Flaist (USA): a digital toolkit of APIs and SDKs fast tracking banks and financial institution’s digital experience.
  • Kilde (Singapore): a regulated private debt investment platform raising debt capital for digital lenders from investors.
  • Open CBS (Hong Kong): an agile cloud-based core banking system for financial institutions.
  • Raseed (USA): investment platform that makes it easy and simple for millennials in GCC to buy and sell shares in US stock markets.
  • Singular Capital (Malaysia): an active investment management app that’s looking to give users superior market returns.
  • Stornest (UAE): a digital legacy planning tool designed to share information with your loved ones that you would like to keep private while you are alive.
  • Tajjir (Jordan): a white labelled online trading application that helps stock brokers increase trade volume

Throughout the programme the corporate partners of the Startupbootcamp FinTech Dubai have been a key part of the programme. All throughout from the start of the programme to the Demo Day they have been actively involved with startups, from taking part in the Partners Day, to meeting the startups and advising them all with a focus of developing proof of concept for fruitful partnerships.

Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC)

Raja Al Mazrouei, Executive Vice President of FinTech Hive at DIFC,said: “Startupbootcamp FinTech Dubai’s programme has attracted hugely ambitious and innovative FinTech start-ups from around the globe since launching in 2018. Congratulations to the 11 participating start-ups graduating from the current cohort who join over 100 likeminded businesses who have been through one of the three programmes we currently offer through DIFC FinTech Hive. They all have the potential to help us shape the future of finance in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia region.”

Mashreq Bank

Subroto Som, Senior Executive Vice President – Group Head of Retail Banking Group, Mashreq Bank, said: “We are pleased to participate in another edition of the Startupbootcamp. Now more than ever, consumers increasingly value digital solutions that help to meet their daily needs. This is no different in the financial services industry – and as a leading financial institution focused on providing an outstanding customer experience, at Mashreq, we consider our collaboration with the FinTech community as a cornerstone of our larger strategy. This year’s cohort once again displayed the varying applications of cutting-edge technologies by FinTechs to solve complex problems – as well as their ability to provide intuitive and innovative experiences for customers.”

Visa

Otto Williams, Head of Strategic Partnerships, Fintech and Ventures at Visa for Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa, said: “Yet another great experience for us – we’ve seen lots of exciting concepts and ideas and have formed lasting relationships with some great innovators. We are delighted to have had the opportunity to mentor and work closely with this third cohort of this FinTech Dubai Accelerator. Startupbootcamp continue to be great partners and we look forward to working with them to nurture future waves of global start-ups in growing the payment innovations and digital experiences that consumers and ecosystem partners can expect to see in the near future.”

As our Demo Day sponsors, PwC Middle East brought to the event not only world class experience to the VIP guests and virtual attendees, but also contributed with their FinTech industry knowledge.

Ali Hosseini, Chief Digital Officer at PwC Middle East, shared:”We are thrilled to host the Demo Day of Startupbootcamp FinTech Dubai in our Experience Centre, and witness 11 startups showcase the rise of the FinTech space in the MENA region. Our Experience Centre encourages innovation and is inspired by startups’ co-working spaces, the Centre keeps collaboration and co-creation at its heart. We built the space around our client’s needs and experience, meant to disrupt traditional workspaces and to promote creativity to solve our clients most important problems.”

About us & partners:

About Startupbootcamp FinTech

Launched in 2014, Startupbootcamp FinTech is the leading global FinTech accelerator focused on innovation for the financial services industry. Based in London, Singapore, New York, Mexico City, Amsterdam, Cairo, Melbourne and Dubai, each program is supported by a network of leading financial players as well as an extensive mentor and alumni network from more than 60 countries across the globe. Startupbootcamp FinTech is part of the global award-winning Startupbootcamp, a network of industry-focused startup accelerators.

About Dubai International Financial Centre

Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) is one of the world’s most advanced financial centres, and the leading financial hub for the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA), which comprises 72 countries with an approximate population of 3 billion and a nominal GDP of USD 7.7 trillion.

With a 16-year track record of facilitating trade and investment flows across the MEASA region, the Centre connects these fast-growing markets with the economies of Asia, Europe and the Americas through Dubai.

DIFC is home to an internationally recognised, independent regulator and a proven judicial system with an English common law framework, as well as the region’s largest financial ecosystem of more than 25,000 professionals working across over 2,500 active registered companies – making up the largest and most diverse pool of industry talent in the region.

The Centre’s vision is to drive the future of finance. Today, it offers one of the region’s most comprehensive FinTech and venture capital environments, including cost-effective licensing solutions, fit-for-purpose regulation, innovative accelerator programmes, and funding for growth-stage start-ups.

Comprising a variety of world-renowned retail and dining venues, a dynamic art and culture scene, residential apartments, hotels and public spaces, DIFC continues to be one of Dubai’s most sought-after business and lifestyle destinations.

For further information, please visit our website: difc.ae, or follow us on Twitter @DIFC.

About Visa

Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is the world’s leader in digital payments. Our mission is to connect the world through the most innovative, reliable and secure payment network – enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive. Our advanced global processing network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second. The company’s relentless focus on innovation is a catalyst for the rapid growth of digital commerce on any device for everyone, everywhere. As the world moves from analog to digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and scale to reshape the future of commerce.

For more information, visit  About Visa, Visa MENA Blog or follow us on Twitter @Visamiddleeast.

About Mashreq

One of the UAE’s best performing banks for five decades, Mashreq is a leading financial institution with an expanding footprint across the Middle East. We have international offices in Europe, Asia, Africa and the US, and a strong presence in the financial capitals of the world.

As the oldest bank in the UAE, our journey can be traced back to humble beginnings in 1967, followed by periods of rapid growth and strategic expansion. Throughout our history, Mashreq has differentiated itself by pioneering new-to-market concepts and launching unique products and services. 

Our innovative approach sets us truly apart, it also continues to win us numerous awards and accolades across all fields including digital banking, the most recent were: Middle East Best Digital Bank by Euromoney Regional Awards for Excellence, the Most Innovative Consumer/Corporate Digital Bank in the UAE and Best Bank in the UAE by World’s Best Bank Awards by Global Finance, Most Innovative Bank in the Middle East by EMEA Finance and many others.

For more information, visit www.mashreqbank.com or follow us on Twitter @MashreqTweets.

About PwC

At PwC, our purpose is to build trust in society and solve important problems. We’re a network of firms in 155 countries with over 284,000 people who are committed to delivering quality in assurance, advisory and tax services. Find out more and tell us what matters to you by visiting us at www.pwc.com.

Established in the Middle East for 40 years, PwC has 22 offices across 12 countries in the region with around 6,000 people. (www.pwc.com/me).

PwC refers to the PwC network and/or one or more of its member firms, each of which is a separate legal entity. Please see www.pwc.com/structure for further details.

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