The Visa Everywhere Initiative: Women’s Global Edition* celebrates women from around the world whose businesses are transforming commerce and supporting economic and social change in local communities.
This includes women like Isabelle Mashola, who co-founded Isahit as a social platform to help women in Africa earn money to run businesses or finance their educations.
Or DinDin founder Stéphanie Fleury, who created a financial services company to provide basic financial services to the unbanked and underbanked individuals and businesses in Brazil, through their app, web-based internet banking and API platforms.
Or Annicelle Kungne, who co-founded WeCashUp, a France-based startup that enables online businesses to accept cash, cards and other payments in a single API interface.
These finalists—and several more—will head to Paris to pitch their ideas to a panel of Visa leaders and clients during the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019™. They will compete for the chance to win $100,000 (USD) and access to mentors, clients and Visa’s vast network of partners.
Since the inception of the Visa Everywhere Initiative (VEI) in 2015, more than 6,000 startups have participated in 24 innovation programs and have collectively raised over $2.5 billion in funding. The VEI: Women’s Global Edition was created to find entrepreneurs in women-founded or women co-founded startups working in the fintech and social impact spaces. The goal? Spotlight female business leaders and support Visa’s commitment to micro and small businesses.
We invited organizations with at least one female founder to submit solutions that tackle the vast societal and business challenges facing the FinTech and Social Impact landscapes. Applicants were invited to respond to one of two challenges.
Challenge 1: FinTech
Leveraging your company’s unique capabilities, how could your solution help transform consumer and/or commercial payment experiences locally, regionally or globally?
Challenge 2: Social Impact
How can women entrepreneurs around the world drive social impact by supporting sustainable and equitable livelihoods and strengthening local/regional economies?
- France: Annicelle Kungne of WeCashUp, the largest Pan African payment gateway that enables eCommerce companies to accept mobile money, cash and cards online in 36 African countries.
- Europe: Eynat Guez of Papaya Global, a SaaS platform that supports total workforce management (payroll, PEO, and contractor management) along with benefits and a full cross-border payments solution in over 100 countries.
- Latin America: Stéphanie Fleury of DinDin, which provides basic financial services to the unbanked and underbanked individuals and businesses in Brazil, through their app, web-based internet banking and API platforms. Their goal is to promote financial inclusion to more than 115 million people through their B2B2C financial ecosystem.
- CEMEA: Naureen Hyat of Tez Financial Services, Pakistan's first fully digital Non-Bank Microfinance Company (NBMFC). Tez aims to provide frictionless financial access to the unbanked and under-banked population via a smartphone application, driven by powerful algorithms and artificial intelligence.
- Asia Pacific: Garima Satija of PoshVine, helps financial services organizations increase customer loyalty and share of spends through contextual, personalized perks and rewards administration. They are building a coalition customer loyalty program through their network of 15,000+ merchant partners whereby users can earn and easily redeem points using linked debit or credit cards.
- North America: Lauren Spiekerman of Alloy, which provides real-time identity and risk decisioning for financial services, including KYC/AML and fraud checks.
Social Impact Finalists:
- France: Isabelle Mashola of Isahit, an innovative socially responsible and intelligent platform that links workers in socio-economically disadvantaged countries of Africa with French companies seeking to outsource digital tasks.
- Europe: Mireia Badia of Grow.ly, a P2B lending platform that connects small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) that need loans with investors that want to get a higher return on their savings. Grow.ly helps Spanish SMEs grow and develop, reducing their dependency on banks, giving them access to financing and generating growth and development.
- Latin America: Fernanda Vicente of Mujeres Del Pacífico, is one of the largest communities of entrepreneurs in Latin America. They have worked with more than 15,000 entrepreneurs in various countries and industries, supporting, connecting and training them.
- CEMEA: Monique Ntumngia of Green Girls Organization, trains women and girls how to generate bio-gas from waste and energy from the sun, increasing access to renewable energy in rural African communities.
- Asia Pacific: Miranda Phua of Zigway, helps low-income families get out of debt with a mobile application to access inexpensive, flexible “Nano Loans” via mobile-phones utilizing a fully-automated process.
- North America: Amanda Levinson of NeedsList, is a real-time needs registry for crisis response. NeedsList’s open marketplace increases community resilience, transparency and collaboration in crisis relief by tracking and predicting needs in real-time before, during, and after disaster.
Be sure to follow us on @VisaNews on June 7th to find out who the two challenge winners are and learn more about what’s next in their entrepreneurial journey! Learn more about the Visa Everywhere Initiative: Women’s Global Edition and get more information about the program.