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Five startups selected for the 2024 Visa Accelerator Program in Asia Pacific to tackle Gen AI and embedded finance solutions

SINGAPORE, May 23, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- Visa, a global leader in digital payments, unveiled the five new startups selected for its Accelerator Program in Asia Pacific for 2024. This year's applicant pool saw talent from Bangladesh, Hong Kong SAR, Singapore, United States and Vietnam, all tackling cutting-edge solutions in artificial intelligence (AI) / generative AI, embedded finance, global money movement, digital acceptance and loyalty of the future.

(PRNewsfoto/Visa)
(PRNewsfoto/Visa)

Standing out from a pool of more than 300 applicants, the five selected startups are:

  • iFarmer (Bangladesh): Founded in 2019, iFarmer is a tech and data driven startup that helps farmers to maximise their profit potential with access to finance, advisory, direct-to-farm commerce. iFarmer also enables financial institutions and individuals to invest in agriculture projects, helps agriculture input companies with their last mile distribution and supplies high quality agriculture products to processing companies and to the export market.

  • iPiD (Singapore): Founded in 2021, iPiD is a payments data orchestration platform that provides a single application programming interface (API) to access account validation services globally. This helps to reduce declined payments, reduce fraud risks and improve customer experience.

  • On-us (Hong Kong SAR): Founded in 2019, On-us is a comprehensive incentive ecosystem offering domestic and cross-border fintech products. Using advanced data analytics and AI, the company provides integrated AdTech, MarTech, and MembershipTech solutions. On-us enhances customer engagement and loyalty through personalised, data-driven campaigns, helping businesses maximise return on investment.

  • Opplane (United States): Founded in 2019, Opplane is building an AI-platform, at the intersection of connectivity, data quality, explainability and self-driving finance.

  • Quqo (Vietnam): Quqo, which started operations in 2021, is a B2B digital marketplace enabler which allows micro, small and medium businesses (MSMB) to order inventory on demand. Quqo also provides upstream Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions such as sales force automation, distribution management system, business intelligence platform and payment solutions such as e-wallet and buy-now-pay-later (BNPL) financing. Its focus segments include fast moving consumer goods (FMCG), healthcare and the automotive aftermarket.

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"Visa is at the forefront of building the commerce of tomorrow, and the Visa Accelerator Program in Asia Pacific is a testament to this commitment. We want to foster a dynamic environment for collaboration and co-creation within our vast ecosystem. Through collaborations with Visa's payment experts, product architects, and business development teams, these startups are equipped to drive tangible outcomes and we look forward to creating new fit for purpose products and solutions that are commercially scalable with our clients and partners," said Kunal Chatterjee, Head of Innovation, Asia Pacific, Visa.

Over the course of six months, these startups will have the unique opportunity to receive bespoke training from Visa's suite of product architects to co-develop, test, and iterate new solutions fit for technical integration to fast-track commercialisation. The program will culminate with a Demo Day. Additionally, one selected startup from this year's cohort will showcase their innovative solution at the Visa Everywhere Initiative, an open innovation program hosted by TechCrunch at Disrupt in San Francisco.

Now in its fourth iteration, the Visa Accelerator Program has helped many startups to realise their growth potential and brought use cases to life. One of the key highlights of the 2023 Visa Accelerator Program in Asia Pacific was the partnership between Visa, startup participant Doxa and United Overseas Bank (UOB) to transform payment processes for the construction industry. The collaboration enabled contractors to gain faster access to working capital, by facilitating quicker and seamless payments for contractors, via deep-tier financing on the Doxa Connex platform. The platform significantly reduces time that contractors get paid by streamlining the work certification process and has also been further enhanced to provide embedded financing capabilities, allowing subcontractors the option to be paid for their services through the UOB virtual cards.

Chatterjee continues, "Previous cohorts have not only signed multi-year agreements and integrated Visa products into their solutions but have also benefited from strategic investments. As we continue to invest in these forward-thinking startups, we stand together in shaping the future of digital commerce, ready for the next generation of commerce."

For the program, Visa has collaborated with Plug and Play, a global powerhouse in innovation platforms. With an impressive track record of investments and mentoring other accelerator programs, Plug and Play will help select and mentor these promising startups with the tools to achieve scalable growth.

To learn more about Visa's Accelerator Program, visit our website here.

Startup quotes

Fahad Ifaz, co-founder and chief executive officer of iFarmer said: "With our focus on agriculture, we take a systemic view of the challenges of today and the future. Our insight into interconnectivity informs our design and delivery of market-relevant solutions, improving the lives of the farmers and other actors in the agriculture value chain. Our solution related to payment facilities aligns with the Visa Accelerator Program's aim to expand financial access and enables us to help underserved populations in Bangladesh."

Damien Dugauquier, co-founder and chief executive officer of iPiD said: "The global payment system is undergoing a dynamic transformation, and interoperability is emerging as a cornerstone for the future. The current remittance system is riddled with inefficiencies, causing friction at every stage of the value chain and leaving opportunities for fraudsters to deceive users into misdirecting transactions. Leveraging our extensive experience in traditional payments and settlements, iPiD aims to bridge these gaps. We envision a future where existing value-added services seamlessly interoperate, and the Visa Accelerator Program presents a perfect platform to propel this vision forward, ultimately transforming the way financial services are delivered and consumed."

Dennis Shi, founder and chief executive officer of On-us said: "What makes On-us unique is that we go the last mile. We remove all the friction around that crucial moment of redemption, making it easy for the marketers, merchants and consumers to have a seamless and personalised digital experience. Being able to continue providing this level of service at scale is a challenging task, and this is why the Visa Accelerator Program is very exciting for us. It perfectly aligns with our strategic goals and allows us the opportunity to work alongside Visa, leveraging their insights and technology that are crucial to advancing our solutions globally."

Sunny Trikha, founder of Opplane said: "Domain knowledge and deep data expertise is essential to help clients succeed in their data transformation initiatives. As part of building an AI-platform at the intersection of connectivity, data quality, explainability and self-driving finance, we recently created an AI-driven proof-of-concept to enrich financial data, significantly enhancing consumer experience as well as driving operational cost efficiencies for the bank. The Visa Accelerator Program gives us access to Visa's resources and network partners, providing the opportunity to scale the platform across geographies and financial data sources."

Jaime Roldan, founder and chief executive officer of Quqo said: "At Quqo, we are committed to empowering traditional retailers with the right tools to thrive in today's digital age. Our mission remains clear as we continue to bridge the financial inclusion gap for micro, small and medium businesses by equipping them with digital payments and access to credit. By combining our market acumen and our diverse network of strategic partners, we believe our solution not only facilitates secure digital B2B payments across traditional channels but also allows these businesses to grow and scale and ultimately foster a seamless buying experience for their customers. The Visa Accelerator Program enables us to forge deeper connections with other like-minded entrepreneurs, industry leaders, clients and partners and we have no doubt that it will further fuel our growth and expansion in this region and beyond."

About Visa

Visa (NYSE: V) is a world leader in digital payments, facilitating transactions between consumers, merchants, financial institutions and government entities across more than 200 countries and territories. Our mission is to connect the world through the most innovative, convenient, reliable and secure payments network, enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive. We believe that economies that include everyone everywhere, uplift everyone everywhere and see access as foundational to the future of money movement. Learn more at Visa.com.

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SOURCE Visa