This summer, five Brazilian FinTech startups began a one-of-kind acceleration program in Silicon Valley. However, this journey started in early May back in São Paulo, Brazil and is all part of the Track Acceleration Program, organized by GSVlabs in partnership with Visa, powered by Kyvo.
“The program is designed to both identify high quality startups in the FinTech space and accelerate their businesses. I've spoken to many international startups who felt like they were ready for Silicon Valley but didn't want to spend too much time away from their teams,” said Bobby Amiri, Director of International Operations at GSVlabs.
GSVlabs works with early stage startups (Pre-seed to Series A) across a variety of verticals such as EdTech, FinTech and HealthTech with technology that includes AR/VR, AI and Machine Learning, among others.
Amiri says GSVlabs identified Brazil as a leading emerging market for startup innovation, particularly in the FinTech space. And for a corporate partner GSVlabs said Visa was the right fit.
“Corporate innovation is an important focus area of GSVlabs. Visa has a strong brand and network and has been a true partner in providing each of the startups with the necessary resources to gain traction,” says Amiri.
Out of the 181 submissions, 15 were selected to make their pitch to be selected. The screening process to make it to pitch, included startups going through an executive review, expert review and face-to-face interview.
Five were selected from their 5-minute pitch to enter the summer long acceleration.
“Each of the winners has developed unique technology that represents a need in FinTech - everything from security and payments to Bitcoin or a social credit score. The teams are all passionate about solving the pain points of their respective customers,” said Amiri.
Meet the startups:
Beetech: A technology company born out of ideas that connect financial technology and innovation in transparency for the main currency exchange services in the world.
Dataholics: A platform that captures and structures millions of data from people who are on social networks like Facebook, Linkedin, Google+, Twitter and many others.
Foxbit: Bitcoin and digital assets trading platform.
Nextone: a platform focused on increasing revenue of segments, reducing bureaucracy and simplifying
insurance sales and financial services.
Saffe: Payment and authentication solutions via facial recognition.
The startups spent one month in Silicon Valley, where they worked with experienced Mentors with extensive backgrounds in the Financial Industry to gain valuable information and resources.
They will then return to Brazil for three more months of incubation, with the help of Kyvo who will help on-site in São Paulo.
“We're hopeful that with the success of our first FinTech cohort with Visa there may be opportunities to replicate this model across other key markets in Latin America that Visa is serving,” said Amiri.
Stay tuned for more stories on the startups and demos from what they are working on.