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Call for Applications, FinTech, India 2016, Village Capital

Home Forums Startup and Social Entrepreneur Opportunities Call for Applications, FinTech, India 2016, Village Capital

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    Craig Zelizer

    FinTech: India 2016

    Winter 2016 | Future

    Fintech has exploded in India in the last two years,- the sector is projected to grow at 22 %, with USD $1.25 billion invested in Indian fintech startups in 2015 alone. In parallel, the Government of India has prioritized financial inclusion through initiatives such as Aadhaar, small finance banks, payment banks, and pension, savings and bank account schemes for the unorganized workforce, children, and the unbanked. As a result, bank account penetration in India now stands at 53%, up from 35% in 2012.Yet almost 60% of these accounts show negligible or no transactions and only 7 – 8% of small businesses in the country have access to credit, either institutional or non-institutional.  Significant gaps remain in the following:

    • Distribution of services to underserved demographics and areas;
    • Effective credit mechanisms and financial protection for SMBs and the agricultural sector;
    • Streamlined processes for government and private sector payments;
    • Social security and wealth creation mechanisms for low-wealth communities.

    To address these challenges, Village Capital, sponsored by PayPal and BlackRock, as well as local partner DBS Foundation, is hosting a 3-month business training program for early-stage fintech ventures from across India. The program will support selected entrepreneurs through an award-winning program curriculum, 1:1 mentorship from sector leaders, and tailored engagement with potential strategic partners and investors. The program is 12 days of in-person work, taking place across three workshops spanning the course of three months.

    At the end of the program, the top two ventures, as selected by their peers in the cohort, will receive an offer of US $50,000 in pre-committed capital investment from VilCap Investments.



    Eligible Enterprises:

    Village Capital is seeking ventures with technology solutions to increase access and affordability of financial services for consumers and small businesses in India. Specific types of companies include, but are not limited to, those that:

    •  Offer innovative, appropriate lending products, both SME & consumer, especially for essential services like health, education & housing  (e.g.: peer-to-peer lending models, innovative SME financing, emergency loans etc.);
    • Increase efficiency of distribution for provision of financial services across India, such as credit, payments, remittances etc. (“banking tech”, such as mobile wallets, money transfer tools, payments for micro-merchants);
    • Provide solutions for wealth creation & protection models for households and small businesses (e.g. savings, investment platforms, insurance tech, micro-insurance);
    • Leverage technology and data analytics for better credit scoring and customer segmentation for consumer and business lending;
    • Improve financial literacy and enable greater formalization and transparency of financial transactions;
    • Streamline the process for accessing government schemes in financial services and beyond. (e.g.: Aadhaar-based payments & remittances).

    Furthermore, eligible enterprises must:

    • Have at least one full-time employee in India
    • Have meaningful customer or business validation (not limited to revenue, can also be successful pilot studies, number of users, and/or strategic partnerships)
    • Be interested in raising capital in the next 12 -18 months

     Program Dates:

    • Workshop 1: Nov 9 -12, 2016
    • Workshop 2:  December 7– 10 2016
    • Workshop 3: January 10 – 13, 2017

    Apply: Applications close August 26th. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis, and those that apply earlier will have greater chances of being selected – we encourage you to apply early!

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