Mastercard today announces that it has opened the application process for its Start Path intake for winter.
Mastercard’s startup engagement programme Start Path Global works with startups to drive new businesses forward, help scale their businesses and increase profitability.
Start Path is an integral part of Mastercard’s broader startup engagement effort that is focused on partnering with the best startups to collaborate and create new experiences for its customers, business partners, and the broader financial industry.
Start Path was established in 2014 as a way for Mastercard to work directly with global startups building innovative solutions covering everything from blockchain to artificial intelligence and chatbots. Since then, Start Path has worked with over 90 companies across 24 countries. Mastercard is currently running active pilots with or has directly invested in nearly 20 percent of the companies.
“In 2014 we wanted to look beyond Mastercard and support innovation that was being developed by new and upcoming, early-stage companies” said Stephane Wyper, Global Lead Mastercard Start Path “We believe every startup is unique and that there isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach to working together. We have put in place different mechanisms including pilots with Mastercard business lines, access to our APIs, and connectivity to our customer base and partner networks.”
Start Path has seen success in the UK and Ireland and is intensifying its search here as a testament to its vibrant startup community. The objective of the programme is stay close to local innovations and to drive success for the early-stage companies that are working on next-generation commerce technologies. The six-month, virtual programme will help startups from the region tackle business problems and introduce them to new opportunities around the globe.
The startup community in London has been growing at an unprecedented rate and the region has been churning out some major success stories. Start Path is currently working with 5 startups that are based in the UK.
Start Path is also working with ClubApp, an Irish startup that provides sports clubs in UK with a platform to share live updates from matches while generating match statistics, has integrated Qkr! with Masterpass technology to enable its members to pay clubs fees and buy club merchandise via the app. In Norwich, Rainbird is currently working to build an artificial intelligence-driven virtual assistant to augment knowledge-sharing and decision-making across the Mastercard UK loyalty sales team. DoPay, DigiSEq, Everledger and Universal Basket are all working with Start Path to identify growth areas, partnership possibilities and integration plans within and beyond Mastercard.
Each quarter, Mastercard Start Path recruits a new class of startups to embark on the six-month virtual programme. The programme is currently accepting applications for its next class. The application window to join the next class is open until October 11, 2016.