Contxto – Today (23), Village Capital, alongside PayPal and the MetLife Foundation, announced the next group of fintech startups that will participate in the Finance Forward Latin America 2020 Accelerator.
Consequently, these 12 companies will have a busy five weeks of work alongside mentors, potential customers, and partners, as they evaluate their solutions to scale.
Within this group, two fintechs will be eligible to receive a grant for US$50,000 from the MetLife Foundation. The companies that take third through fifth place will each receive US$16,000.
Village Capital versus Covid-19
Considering the constraints brought on by the coronavirus outbreak, the program and grants will prove critical in helping these early-stage startups grow and reach more users.
“The coronavirus pandemic has had devastating financial effects on low-income populations in Latin America,” reflected Daniel Cossío, Regional Manager for Village Capital Latin America.
“Now more than ever, tech-driven innovation can be at the forefront of helping small businesses stay afloat, families manage their income, and the region embarks on what is bound to be a challenging recovery,” concluded Cosío.
Naturally, the pandemic has also brought on challenges for the accelerator.
For one, Village Capital told Contxto that by migrating to an online format, organizers had to restructure the program to offer a more engaging experience. It also had to explore ways of enabling entrepreneurs to build meaningful connections with mentors.
Despite these obstacles, there was a big silver lining for startups.
“The capital we would’ve used for logistical purposes—venue, catering, flights, and accommodations—was channeled towards the entrepreneurs,” said Village Capital.
Plus, the pandemic is also opening more market opportunities, according to organizers.
“With Covid-19, many jobs and benefits have been lost. But the demand for delivery services and remote work has also increased,” said the accelerator in written correspondence.
“This opens a window to proposals that improve this new work environment as well as launch digital services into markets that weren’t considered viable before.”
All things considered, one can only wonder what kind of innovative startups will participate next year… But for now, here are the chosen fintechs!
Finance Forward Latin America 2020
This startup pays, consolidates, and refinances all debts of defaulters whose registration at credit bureaus prevents them from getting a job, requesting another credit line, among other services.
Ditch the credit card. With Aplazo, consumers in Mexico can split e-commerce purchases into equal bi-weekly installments without needing a credit card. Thus, their clients can avoid the dreaded debt trap.
CIGE Mexico/IF-Bot (Mexico)
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) need consulting services to survive but don’t necessarily have the resources for it. Through CIGE, they work with an AI solution that provides advice to manage their business.
Fintech Creci offers companies, NGOs, and entrepreneurs a platform to receive financing for projects that make a social impact.
Many families rely on remittances to make ends meet. Unfortunately, when there are multiple cash transactions involved, homes wind up receiving less money. But through Druber, users will get a bigger bargain for their buck through a more transparent platform with less third-party involvement.
When freelancers and the self-employed are in a cash flow crunch, Factcil helps provide them with liquidity to pay their invoices.
This fintech offers APIs for open banking solutions. The startup offers quick connectivity and valuable insights so fintechs can start building customized solutions.
Bogotá-based Fundefir is well-aware of Latam’s unbanked population. So it wants to provide them an opportunity to access credits, insurance, and other wellbeing services.
Small businesses can become banks (sorta) on Imix’s platform. Through the fintech, business owners become banking service providers meanwhile banks benefit as they have a wider reach but at a lower cost.
Everyone should have access to a healthy meal, regardless of their socioeconomic status. For Nilus, that means saving food that would otherwise be thrown away and delivering it to low-income neighbors at discounted prices.
Quipu Market (Colombia)
This marketplace allows informal micro-businesses to buy and sell locally without cash. Instead, they use a community tokening system.
Saving money can be a hard habit to acquire. So U-Zave’s platform does it for you. For every purchase you make with the fintech’s partners, a small amount is channeled towards a mutual fund.
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