Today, Mastercard welcomed five new startups to its Start Path Global program – the company’s global initiative to support innovative later-stage startups who are reshaping the future of commerce. The program is open to startups who are rethinking banking and payments and have raised a significant seed or Series A round of investment.
“Fintech startups around the world are designing a digital future,” said Amy Neale, Vice President, Mastercard Start Path. “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.”
Three out of the five startups joining Start Path’s 2017 spring wave are focused on artificial intelligence (AI). These startups are using AI to analyze consumer behavior, enhance in-store or in-branch customer engagement, and compute bill and payment data, driving a variety of retail innovations. The other two startups have developed solutions that extend retail access to consumers through point of sale innovations.
The spring 2017 Start Path class includes:
Putting Ideas into Action
Since 2014, the Start Path team has received interest from 5,000 startups, leading to working with 100 companies spanning 24 countries. Through the first four classes, 20 percent of the participants have worked with Mastercard in commercial engagements or pilots.
Mastercard is collaborating with DigiSEq, an IoT payment device enabler, to connect DigiSEq device manufacturer customers with Mastercard tokenization services and enable payments on wearables. Kasisto, the company that created the conversational KAI Banking AI platform, is currently piloting a bot for banks for Mastercard employees that allows consumers to transact, manage finances, receive contextual offers and learn about benefits via messaging platforms. RecargaPay, a mobile payment solution that enables Latin American consumers to top-up their prepaid mobile phones and pay for utility bills, partnered with Mastercard to launch a card-on-file marketing promotion to attract new users.