Startup community gets boost from Visa | Inquirer Business

Startup community gets boost from Visa

/ 04:15 AM December 05, 2020

Global payments giant Visa has rolled out a new program to help startups that have found initial success in their home market break into new geographies and customer groups.

Visa will select an elite group of up to six startups in Asia-Pacific to be part of the first cohort of its “Visa Accelerator Program,” which seeks to focus on creating defined commercial opportunities for startups to collaborate with Visa and its extensive network of bank and merchant partners in the region.

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“In Visa’s ongoing work with the startup community, we often see companies face challenges when taking their business from a local success story to becoming a player in multiple markets,” said Dan Wolbert, Visa country manager for the Philippines and Guam.

“There is a vibrant fintech (financial technology) ecosystem in the Philippines. At Visa, we have global expertise that can help startups take their expansion plans off the white board and into the real world. We encourage Philippine startups who want to partner with us to join this program so we can help them scale.”

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The Visa Accelerator Program is designed for startups that have made inroads in their home markets, but are looking toward the next stage of growth. As the engine of global commerce, Visa believes it is uniquely positioned to help startups enter new markets.

Startups in the program should be ready to work on some of the most pressing financial and technological opportunities in Asia-Pacific. Visa is looking for startups that want to address areas such as:

• Expanding access to the digital economy to consumers and businesses that may be underserved or cash-dependent

• Supporting small businesses as they grapple with changing technology demands and the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic

• Leveraging the growing open data environment in the region to develop more personalized banking and shopping experiences

• Developing new ways of moving money that are not dependent on traditional credit and debit cards

“There is no shortage of fantastic solutions coming out of the Asia-Pacific, particularly the Philippine startup community. What’s most important to Visa is how we can support those solutions getting elevated to a stage where in a few months’ time they could be pitched as a commercial deal to a leading bank, retailer or technology company in the region. A big differentiator for the Visa Accelerator Program is our concentration on a small number of startups that are truly ready to unlock that next level,” Wolbert said. —DORIS DUMLAO-ABADILLA

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