DIFC FinTech Hive receives huge response from global participants - GulfToday

DIFC FinTech Hive receives huge response from global participants

DIFC

The participants of the third cohort of DIFC FinTech Hive Accelerator Programme.

Business Bureau, Gulf Today

In line with the continuous growth and development of the Dubai International Financial Centre’s financial innovation ecosystem, the DIFC FinTech Hive, has announced the commencement of the 2019 edition of its accelerator programme. The third edition of the programme launched by the region’s first financial technology accelerator received an overwhelming response of over 425 applications from across the world, including Asia, Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.

This year’s programme will feature a larger pool of start-ups, having increased by around 50 per cent to 31 this year, from 22 in 2018, covering a broader scope to include FinTech, InsurTech, RegTech and Islamic FinTech. The finalists consise 15 start-ups specialising in the FinTech sector, four specialising in the Islamic FinTech sector, ten in the InsurTech sector, and two in the RegTech sector.

The selected were evaluated by the programme’s partners, who made an assessment based on set criteria including business proposition viability, applicability of technology to the region, potential to benefit from the programme, followed by extensive one-on-one interviews.

With its broad remit, FinTech Hive continues to lead the region’s efforts in providing an enabling environment for innovative solutions to contribute to the development of the financial services industry, in line with Dubai Plan 2021 and DIFC’s 2024 Strategy.

“Innovation and financial technology are at the core of our strategy at DIFC and FinTech Hive is an extension of how our enabling environment is helping young, promising start-ups to disrupt the sector. We are incredibly pleased to see the overwhelming response received for the third cohort of the accelerator programme, which is a testament to our commitment to shape the future of the regional financial landscape. With Dubai recognised as one of the world’s top ten FinTech hubs, and the leader in the MEASA region, DIFC is well placed to drive this growth and serve as a platform for aspiring entrepreneurs to access these vast opportunities,” said Raja Al Mazrouei, Executive Vice President of DIFC FinTech Hive. “We are looking forward to another successful edition of the programme and wish the finalists all the very best,” she added.

The accelerator programme consists of a three-month curriculum in which a group of selected finalists work closely with stakeholders and representatives from various fields to create innovative and forward-looking solutions that aim to address the evolving needs of the region’s financial services industry. The 21 participating partners who will mentor the start-ups include Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (ADIB), Emirates Islamic, Emirates NBD, Finablr, HSBC, National Bank of Fujairah, Noor Bank, Riyad Bank, Standard Chartered, and Visa, as well as associate financial institution partners Arab Bank and First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB).

InsurTech start-ups will work with leading insurance players, AXA Gulf, Noor Takaful (Ethical Insurance), Zurich Insurance Company Ltd (DIFC), AIG, Insurance House, Cigna Insurance Middle East S.A.L. and MetLife. In addition, this year’s finalists will be supported by strategic partner Dubai Islamic Economy Development Centre (DIEDC) and digital transformation partner Etisalat

The programme will culminate in an ‘Investor Day’, offering the participating start-ups an opportunity to showcase their technologies and achievements to prospective partners and investors.

The finalists selected for the 2019 cycle of the FinTech Hive accelerator programme include: AECA (Singapore); AuditXPRT Limited (UK); Azakaw (UAE); BodyO (UAE); Clear Quote (India); Crayon Data (Singapore); DAPI (UAE); Eazy Financial Services (Bahrain); FinFirst (Kuwait); Hakbah (Saudi Arabia); HelloGold (Malaysia); i3systems (India); Intain FinTech (Singapore); IslamiChain (UAE); Jubi.ai (UAE); KASKO (UK); Krowd (UK); LEAP FinTech (UAE); Medyear (USA); Monimove (UAE); NEO Mena Technologies (UAE); Okanii (Canada); Prime Factor (Belgium); Seyula.io (UAE); Statys (UAE); Upswot (Ukraine); UPUP (Czech Republic); Uqudo (UAE); Wally (USA); Wethaq Capital Markets (UAE); and ZappyAI (UK).

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 $7.7 trillion.

With a 15-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 24,000 professionals working across over 2,200 active registered companies – making up the largest and most diverse pool of industry talent in the region.