Selected by peers as top ventures bringing financial services to low-income individuals in Mexico
Mexico City, Mexico (May 4, 2015)—Village CapitalandAccion Venture Labannounced the winners of their program, Village Capital-Accion Venture Lab: FinTech Mexico 2015. The program partnered with theMasterCard Center for Inclusive Growth,Pomona Impact, andUnited IT Consultants, Inc. to support entrepreneurs making financial services more affordable and accessible for Mexicans who lack access to traditional financial services (“underbanked”).
A total of$125,000USDwas awarded to the two winning companies,Credilikeme($75,000) andBillPocket($50,000). The two companies were selected by the program’s 10 other participating companies, which ranked each other according to team, product, social impact, financial projections, and other criteria.
Credilikeme(Culiacán Rosales) is an online lending platform that uses Facebook to reach, analyze, and engage borrowers.BillPocket(Guadalajara, Mexico) facilitates payments for more than 5,500 Mexican merchants using their mobile points of sale.
Over the last three months, this group of 12 entrepreneurs total received business development training, and mentorship from nearly 150 investors, industry experts, policymakers, and top business leaders in Mexico. The participating ventures in the program aim to create100 jobs, provide approximately200,000low-income Mexicans with greater access to financial services, and help the program participants raise up to$1.4 million USDin investment capital and demonstrate250% revenue growth.
“Village Capital has partnered with Accion Venture Lab, MasterCard Center for Inclusive Growth, Pomona Impact, and United IT Consultants to help develop the entrepreneurial community in Mexico,” said Village Capital’s Executive Director,Ross Baird. “By supporting these great businesses in the program, we aim to build sustainable economic growth through financial inclusion, which will benefit local communities, entrepreneurs, and investors.”
Paul Breloff, Accion Venture Lab’s Managing Director, added: “Mexico has been a global leader in bringing to market innovative financial products, services, and technologies for lower income customers and small businesses. This accelerator program really brought together some of the best startups and players in the Mexico Fintech space, as cohort members, mentors, partners, and more. We’re excited for the entire cohort and are looking forward to following their growth.”
The other participating companies in this program were:
- Aspiriabridges the gap between bank loans and typical consumer credit for small businesses.
- Banlineasells software to financial institutions that allows them to offer online credit applications and integrated credit applications on e-commerce sites.
- Chapulinis a technology provider, offering mobile remittances to underbanked U.S. Hispanics and the businesses that serve them.
- ComproPagoenables e-commerce platforms to accept cash payments.
- El Buen Socioprovides affordable loans with flexible payment plans to socially and environmentally impactful entrepreneurs.
- Kiwiis a financial platform that allows low-income families to plan and pay for products and services without taking on debt, while allowing merchants to widen their customer base and increase sales.
- Neteropartners with local retailers and service providers to offer immigrants in the US a way to send prepaid store credit to their relatives in their country of origin.
- Volabitis a mobile wallet for Bitcoin and pesos that users can deposit into with cash at corner stores.
- yotepresto.comis a peer to peer lending platform that brings both lenders and borrowers online to facilitate lower interest rates.
- Zave Apphelps people build savings and avoid interest payments by making saving easy.
Village Capital finds, trains, and invests in early-stage entrepreneurs solving major global problems. Their peer-selection model and curriculum were awarded McKinsey/Harvard Business Review’s prestigious M-Prize for innovation in 2013. Over the past 5 years, program graduates have reached 6 million customers, created over 7,000 jobs, and raised more than $110 million in follow-on capital. To date, 93% of their portfolio alumni are still in business. To learn more, visitwww.vilcap.comor follow them on Twitter @villagecapital.
AboutAccion Venture Lab
Accion Venture Lab is the leading seed-stage investment firm for financial inclusion. Accion Venture Lab, since inception in 2012, has invested in 20 enterprises and screened nearly 1,000 companies in the financial inclusion space. V-Lab is part of Accion, a world pioneer in microfinance who over the last 40 years has helped build 63 microfinance institutions (MFIs) in 32 countries on four continents. Four of V-Lab’s 20 investments work in Mexico, and Accion has worked actively in the Mexican market for the last 2 decades, including an early investment in microfinance leader Compartamos.
The MasterCard Center for Inclusive Growth was created to foster collaborative relationships between academia, governments, nonprofits, the social design community, and the private sector. Through the advancement of research and strategic philanthropic investments, the Center will support and enable those historically excluded from financial services and serve as a catalyst for change.
Pomona Impact makes investments in Small Growing Businesses across Mexico, Central America, and Ecuador. In particular, it targets firms that improve the lives of people living in the bottom of the economic pyramid and benefit the environment. Pomona Impact seek to add value to portfolio companies through strategic advisory, financial structuring, and introductions to potential partners, and also actively seeks to build the entrepreneurial ecosystems in its target region by developing co-working spaces with substantial skill-building programming. They have launched two co-working spaces in Guatemala and intend to develop additional co-working projects in Central America.
About United IT Consultants, Inc.
United IT Consultants, a Telco oriented IT infrastructure company, has recently implemented a special program to support the Mexican ecosystem through startups solving major challenges facing Mexico and the global economy. They focus on three main topics (financial inclusion, renewable energy, and healthcare) and specifically target startups addressing the challenges that can be solved or improved
through technology and the Exponential Organization philosophy.