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Currensea joins Mastercard Start Path open banking programme

Source: Currensea

Debit as a service platform, Currensea, has been selected for the Mastercard Start Path Open Banking program, an award-winning, global start-up engagement program.

Through the program, Currensea will have the opportunity to access Mastercard’s global payments expertise – with increased collaboration with Mastercard and access to its trusted global network which will help the fintech to scale and meet its longer-term growth plans.

Founded in 2014, Start Path has created more than 10,000 startup connections around the world and engaged more than 350 startups representing more than 40 countries. Today, many Start Path companies are entering the public markets, reaching unicorn status and entering extended commercial engagements with Mastercard and its customers.​

In June 2022, Mastercard launched a global Start Path Open Banking program to engage open banking startups on their path to scale, uncover unique opportunities to co-innovate and power experiences that enable consumer choice.

Currensea is the UK’s first open banking debit card platform which allows organisations to offer branded debit cards without the need for their own current account - creating a simple solution for organisations looking to broaden their customer engagement.

Originally launched as a B2C proposition before expanding the offering in 2021, Currensea offers travellers savings of 85%-100% on overseas spending by removing the normal foreign exchange fees leveraged by banks and other card providers. The Currensea debit card connects to a users’ existing bank account using open banking so there is no need to open a new account.

During the Start Path Open Banking program, Currensea will get access to a combination of hands-on mentoring, co-innovation opportunities and engagement with Mastercard’s global network of banks, merchants, partners and digital players to help scale their business. The program provides fintechs with support including customer acquisition, market expansion, product development and marketing.

The program receives over 1,200 applications each year and, given the intense competition, has a 4% acceptance rate.

James Lynn, CEO, Currensea, comments: “Unlocking access to the world-class expertise available through Mastercard’s Start Path program will transform our business. The insight and support we’ll receive from an innovative technology leader such as Mastercard will provide the tools needed to scale at pace, partnering with all organisations, from retailers to charities, to enable them to seamlessly issue their own branded debit cards.

“Ultimately, it is the consumer who will benefit as we accelerate our growth plans with new products and enhanced user experience. We launched Currensea to offer more control over spending, this partnership will allow us to offer our innovative debit as a service proposition to a far wider audience as we continue to revolutionise the debit card market.”

Acceptance into Mastercard’s Start Path program concludes a highly successful 12 months for Currensea with notable milestones including:

  • Launch of corporate partnerships offering branded debit cards to organisations including Knight Frank, Royal Society of Medicine and Royal Trinity Hospice
  • Securing £4.55m in funding including VC funding from Venture Capitalists Blackfinch Ventures and 1818 Venture Capital

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