MasterCard is calling on African startups to enroll in its next Start Path Global 2017 Class, a global initiative by the multinational financial services company to support innovative later-stage startups in reshaping the future of commerce.
The program brings together startups from around the world to provide them with the operational support, mentorship, and investment they require to come up with new business solutions and take their investments to the next level.
“The program is open to startups from Africa and across the world who are rethinking banking and payments and have raised a significant seed or Series A round of investment,” MasterCard says.
Those selected for the six-month virtual program will also enjoy a global network of MasterCard experts, access to MasterCard customers, and partners, including global corporate brands spanning banking, retail, tech, and telecoms as well as the ability to innovate on top of MasterCard solutions.
Applications for the next Start Path Global 2017 Class are open until April 23, 2017, and the U.S.-based company encourages all African startups that meet the criteria to apply.
For a company to qualify, it has to have a well-established and experienced team of personnel, offer a live solution in the market, target a sizeable market opportunity, demonstrate a sustainable advantage over competitors, and recently secured seed or Series A round of investment.
“They’re bringing a different approach to enhance customer choice and experience across the industry. Our work with these startups helps connect new technology with reliable, secure financial networks and processes to create an even more rewarding and seamless commerce experience,” says Amy Neale, MasterCard Start Path VP.
Neale adds that the program is aimed at bringing together unique startups from around the world to help design a digital future in the provision of financial services.
Since its inception in 2014, Start Path has received 5,000 applications from interested companies from across the globe and has worked with 100 startups from 24 countries.
So far it has had four classes, with 20 percent of the participants being selected to work with MasterCard in both pilot and commercial ventures.
MasterCard, one of the leading global payment and technology companies, says the main objective of the program is to help startups grow their businesses faster than they could by themselves.