Visa selects 5 startups across APAC for accelerator program

By Kate Birch
Digital payments firm Visa selects five startups from hundreds of applicants across Asia Pacific and globally as part of its inaugural Accelerator Progr...

Leading digital payments company Visa has selected five startups to be a part of the inaugural Visa Accelerator Program in Asia Pacific.

The five startups, which include Brankas, Curlec, DigitSecure, ModusBox and Open, span Asia Pacific, with headquarters including Hyderabad in India, Jakarta in Indonesia, and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. 

Over the next four to six months, the chosen startups will focus on creating defined commercial opportunities to collaborate on new payment solutions with Visa and its extensive network of bank and merchant partners. 

A key goal for Visa’s accelerator program is to support startups that have launched successful solutions in their own home markets as they plan their next stage of growth.

While the program received hundreds of startups “with outstanding ideas for new and enhanced commercial experience”, the five participants selected were the ones that really stood out, according to Chris Clark, regional president, Asia Pacific, Visa. "We're excited to work with each of the startups in our first cohort to bring their concepts to life and expand their businesses into new markets across the region."

The startups will work on fintech opportunities

The five startups have been tasked with working on some of the most pressing financial and technological opportunities that are happening in Asia Pacific. The startups include: 

  1. Brankas This Jakarta-headquartered fintech is an open banking technology provider offering financial software and solutions for financial institutions and fintechs in Southeast Asia. Brankas will leverage the open banking and open data environment to create new payment and data-led experiences. 
  2. Open A neo-banking platform for small and medium businesses founded in Bangalore in 2017, Open will find new ways to support small businesses in managing and streamlining their operations digitally as they adapt to changing technology demands
  3. Curlec A subscription management platform founded in 2018 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Curlec enables businesses to collect recurring payments easily and take control of their cash flow. They will develop innovative new ways to pay and be paid digitally to help drive financial inclusion for many more consumers and businesses. 
  4. DigitSecure An omnichannel payments acceptance platform for business of all types and sizes, DigitSecure will discover new and original ways to support small businesses in managing and streamlining their operations. 
  5. ModusBox A global open-source platform for real-time payments that will develop new ways to pay and be paid digitally to help drive financial inclusion for more consumders and businesses. Perfect for this startup with a history of social impact, working with governments, credit unions and telecoms across Southeast Asia.  

What is the Visa Accelerator Program?

The Visa Accelerator Program, which is part of Visa's broader set of platforms and activities for the startup community in Asia Pacific, is designed for entrepreneurs to quickly test and validate partnership opportunities through an accelerated Proof of Concept (POC) over the course of 4-6 months.

Unlike traditional POCs that take valuable time and resources away from startups, the Visa Accelerator Program is designed to quickly evaluate opportunities for partnerships, and move those promising opportunities forward with a fast-tracked path to pilots, partnerships, and commercialisation post-program.

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