Citi launches accelerator program for startups

The CEO Jamie Dimon of JP Morgan fame has warned the businessmen involved in startups that a great disruption was about to happen in banking sector, that had initially occurred in the Silicon Valley. SBI had also visited Bengaluru to find out in a startup session how the small ventures and the disruptive technologies were making themselves felt to the maximum at the financial services industry.

It is indeed strange that people have started working on situations that others did not know had existed. The staunch lenders have long dominated the arena of the financial services and had controlled all investments, lending and payments. Now with the arrival of the new fintech startups and with the gradual burgeoning of the internet and mobile banking services, the internet savvy clients have now been presented with a number of options other than the traditional banking methods. Therefore these new payment banks and mobile wallets are standing in the way of any disruption in service because of these options.

The Corporate acceleration scheme for the region Asia Pacific also helps to engage actively with the many startups as in India. The acceleration program called the Citi Mobile Challenge is thus sort of a hackathon virtually and invites developers from all parts of the world to participate.

The software tools referred to as APIs have been opened and thus allow the building of the applications. For that, Citi has partnered with a number of multinational corporate for getting the startups get enough help along with the startups. Big firms like Google, IBM, Amazon, Nasscom, Wipro are to name a few of the big shots that have signed up for this. HDFC tries to encash on this with its payback application that also is a combo of the offers and deals from online retailers along with a handy payment solution added. They have also bought some stakes at portals like CarDekho and so on.

Therefore global banking us going through a fundamental shift and millions of users are getting to access their accounts with a zero balance on their accounts. The KYC through the Adhaar cards verification are allowing the clients to make small transactions.

Mobile solutions like Paytm are also offering great services in paying for any ecommerce, UBER Transactions or for transferring money. The Citi Mobile Challenge is also getting to develop 1000 developers for building solutions. Citigroup can now steer and pilot all applications through accelerator program for startups all over the world, in Latin America, US, Europe and in Asia. The finalists for the program with get rewards for office space, mentoring and also for technology, using their cloud solutions and hosting such application.

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