SWIFT has announced it will host the Innotribe Startup Challenge for fintech startups for the second consecutive year in 2016, at its African Regional Conference in May.
SWIFT said its African Regional Conference – now in its 23rd year – will take place from May 17-19, 2016, in Mauritius; and will bring together over 500 policymakers, industry leaders and the broader financial community from across Africa, for networking, education, discussion and debate.
For the second year running, the conference will play host to the Innotribe Startup Challenge, which aims to introduce the world’s brightest startups to financial service experts, angel investors, venture capitalists, and global leading fintech and financial decision makers.
Disrupt Africa reported earlier this year on the first ever Innotribe Startup Challenge, which saw five African startups selected to compete in the global finals, after 14 African companies made it to the semi-finals. The five African finalists were Intelworld, Notify, YueDiligence, 2Quins and ZAQ Finance.
The five African startups pitched at the global finals, but ultimately missed out on the US$50,000 prize, which went to United States (US) startup Hyperledger.
SWIFT said for the 2016 Startup Challenge, the focus will be on supporting emerging fintech ecosystems, concentrating its efforts in Africa and Latin America.
“Building on the great success from 2015, we are very excited to partner with the SWIFT African Regional Conference for the 2016 Challenge,” said Fabian Vandenreydt, global head of securities, at Innotribe and the SWIFT Institute at SWIFT.
“Africa is a hotbed of fintech activity with a lot of untapped ideas, resources and talent. We are eager to see what the 2016 applicants have to offer, and look forward to giving them that much needed exposure to financial institutions.”
Applications to the 2016 Startup Challenge will open in January 2016, and the successful applicants will be announced in April 2016.