Mexican fintech accelerator launches; MasterCard to open East African financial inclusion lab

Mexican fintech accelerator launches; MasterCard to open East African financial inclusion lab

Mexican fintech startups working to bring financial services to the country's underbanked are being invited to apply for a new accelerator programme and the chance to secure $50,000.

The programme is being run by Village Capital, an organisation that sources, trains and invests in seed-stage social entrepreneurs around the world, the MasterCard Center for Inclusive Growth, and the investment arm of microfinance giant Accion.

During the 10 week programme, which begins in February, 12 local startups will be given business development training, talking to investors, industry experts, top local entrepreneurs, and potential customers, to help grow their plans.

At the end of the period, the two startups ranked highest by the other entrepreneurs in the group will each receive $50,000 in capital from Village Capital and Pomona Impact.

Village Capital claims that, between them, the participants will create 100 jobs and provide approximately 200,000 low-income Mexicans with greater access to financial services, helping local communities and the economy as a whole.

Interested startups have until 12 December to apply.

Meanwhile, MasterCard has secured an $11 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation for a financial inclusion lab in East Africa that promises to work with local entrepreneurs, governments and other stakeholders across the region.

Ajay Banga, CEO, MasterCard, says: "Through the investment made by the Gates Foundation, coupled with our strong innovation processes, MasterCard will create and scale financial services that open up a world of inclusion and help people build better, brighter futures."

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