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Innotribe launches its Startup Challenge for Latin America

Innotribe launches its Startup Challenge for Latin America

22 February 2016 | 5 min read

The Innotribe Startup Challenge is travelling to Latin America for the first time in search of the best startups to showcase their products during the Swift Latin American Regional Conference in June

This press release is also available in Spanish.

Brussels, 22 February 2016 – Swift announces today that the Innotribe Startup Challenge for Latin America is open for applications. For the first time, Innotribe will partner with Swift’s Latin American Regional Conference (LARC), taking place in Mexico City from 28-29 June, to spotlight young local fintech startups providing creative alternatives to traditional banking and transforming the way businesses and consumers use financial services in the region.
From all applicants, Innotribe will select twelve startups to enter the Startup Challenge, showcase their products at the event and receive expert coaching and mentoring. The three best startups will be nominated by the audience as finalists, automatically securing their ticket to Sibos, Swift’s annual global financial services conference, held in Geneva from 26-29 September. At Sibos, they will share the stage with fintech experts and representatives from leading financial institutions worldwide and receive a 10,000 USD cash prize each.

Fabian Vandenreydt, Global Head of Securities, Innotribe, and the SWIFT Institute at Swift says: “With Mexico, Chile, Colombia and Peru being hotspots of recent economic development in Latin America, partnering with LARC in Mexico City is an exciting step for Innotribe. Through the Startup Challenge, we want to spotlight innovation across Latin America and provide an opportunity for young fintech companies to use Innotribe’s network and alumni to help them maximise their potential.”

Juan Martinez, Head of Latin America and the Caribbean at Swift, says: “Swift’s Latin American Regional Conference is a unique platform where industry leaders and experts from across the region gather to share experiences and address evolving challenges. By bringing the Innotribe Startup Challenge to LARC, we underline Swift’s commitment to supporting new technologies that will play a big role in the future of the Latin American industry.”

Are you a Latin America-based startup that wants to benefit from expert mentoring and in-depth industry feedback? Apply now to the Innotribe Startup Challenge!

Launched by Innotribe (Swift’s innovation arm) in 2011, the Startup Challenge has become one of the leading global startup competitions, connecting the financial services industry with more than 650 fintech startups around the world and reaching over 4,000 audience members through global showcases and networking events.

Our partnership with the Swift African Regional Conference in 2015 highlighted how much Swift’s member institutions are keen to understand the fintech innovation that is happening in their own communities and the importance for local startups to benefit from in-depth industry feedback and gain exposure at a global stage.

For 2016, Innotribe evolved its Startup Challenge to focus on emerging fintech ecosystems (Africa and Latin America), moving from a global competition to a local programme, supporting innovation where demographic trends, economic growth and regional integration projects are creating fertile ground for new technologies to emerge.

Part of the 2015 Startup Challenge, iwiafrica, a Uganda-based company powering payments and e-commerce solutions for businesses in emerging markets, was one of the finalists selected to attend Sibos in Singapore. Allan Rwakatungu, CEO of iwiafrica, says: "Participating in the Innotribe Startup Challenge was one of the most awesome experiences in my life. The most valuable thing is to meet companies - not only startups participating in the programme, but large banks and vendors from all over the world - make connections and close collaboration deals."

Typically attracting delegates from more than 20 countries, LARC provides thought-provoking plenaries, special interest sessions and various networking opportunities to its participants. It is also the ideal platform for startups to showcase their new products to an audience of policy makers, industry leaders and the broader financial community from across Latin America.

Applications to the 2016 Startup Challenge for Latin America are now open until mid-April 2016.

The successful applicants will be announced in May 2016.

If you’re interested in applying to the programme, please read the Terms and Conditions to get all information you need.

For more information about Innotribe and the Startup Challenge, please visit:

Spanish version

Press release Innotribe start ups LATAM

About Innotribe
Launched in 2009, Swift Innotribe is about innovation and connecting people, networks and ideas. We bring together global innovators and investors, strategists, and influential decision-makers from leading financial institutions across the globe, providing them early insights into innovations that could disrupt current business models and create new opportunities for new ones. Through the Startup Challenge competition, we bridge the gap between the startup ecosystem and the financial service community. For more information, please visit  or follow us on Twitter: @innotribe and Linkedin: Innotribe.

About Swift
Swift is a member-owned cooperative that provides the communications platform, products and services to connect more than 10,500 banking organisations, securities institutions and corporate customers in more than 200 countries and territories. Swift enables its users to exchange automated, standardised financial information securely and reliably, thereby lowering costs, reducing operational risk and eliminating operational inefficiencies. Swift also brings the financial community together to work collaboratively to shape market practice, define standards and debate issues of mutual interest. For more information, visit or follow us on Twitter: @swiftcommunity and LinkedIn: Swift

Swift Press Office
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