Visa is hosting a live competition at Mobile World Congress, with five emerging technology companies competing for a €25,000 cash prize.
The MWC challenge is a prelude to the card scheme's plans to move its Visa Everywhere innovation programme to Europe following a successful two-year run in the US, and the roll-out of the scheme to Latin American and Asian markets.
At Mobile World Congress, five startups will compete for the €25,000 cash prize by presenting their ideas to a jury of Visa executives and industry partners.
For the full-scale launch in Europe in March, Visa will be dangling a €50,000 cash carrot and the prospect of ongoing support and development for the winners.
Shiv Singh, senior vice president of innovation and strategic partnerships, Visa, says: “Visa’s Everywhere Initiative allows us to explore a host of ideas that solve business challenges, influence our product roadmaps, support our customers, and shape our culture of innovation.”
Designed to encourage the 'next big thing' in payments, the programme first launched in the US in 2015 and to-date, nearly 1000 start-ups have collectively raised $1.7 billion in funding, with ultimately 60 finalists and 14 winners selected.
Says Singh: “Every time we expand this programme into a new region, we aim to attract talented entrepreneurs with fantastic ideas to the payments space, and we hope to see similar great outcomes in the European market in the months ahead.”