Get to Know: Andaria

At a glance

Andaria emerges not merely as a fintech entity but as a beacon of financial inclusivity, leading a transformative mission to reshape the payments landscape. With seamlessly integrated solutions, the company aims to empower clients and redefine industry standards through innovation and change. Andaria’s journey of growth and evolution has been marked by securing licenses from both the FCA in the UK and MFSA in Malta.

Initially, Andaria focused on providing payment accounts across various industries, gaining profound insights into businesses’ financial needs. These insights spurred the development of their distinctive Embedded Finance solutions, celebrated for their adaptability and effectiveness. Now, Andaria boasts a proud team of over 60 skilled professionals across Malta and the UK, dedicated to delivering cutting-edge Embedded Finance solutions. Their commitment extends notably to the sports and mobility sectors, as they continue to expand their reach and refine their offerings. They remain steadfast in their dedication to driving financial inclusivity and innovation in all endeavours.

Problem:

Andaria identifies the issue of financial inclusivity in traditional systems where certain individuals or businesses face exclusion from essential financial services. These gaps create barriers to entry and hinder economic empowerment for underserved communities. Many struggle to access banking services, make payments, or manage finances effectively due to limitations in existing systems.

Solution:

An innovative solution that will reshape the payment landscape and promote financial inclusivity. Providing seamlessly integrated solutions and developing cutting-edge Embedded Finance offerings, Andaria empowers clients across diverse industries. Their aim is to bridge the gap between financial institutions and underserved communities, ensuring access to tools and resources for economic prosperity. Through disruption, innovation, and a commitment to change, Andaria works toward a more inclusive financial ecosystem where all individuals and businesses can thrive.

Importance

Andaria addresses key business challenges by enhancing end-user engagement and checkout rates, crucial for boosting sales and fostering loyalty. It facilitates business inclusivity by providing payment accounts and global financial tools, vital for expanding into new markets and competing globally. Additionally, Andaria tackles financial hurdles by reducing operational costs, streamlining payment processes, and implementing revenue-generating solutions, thus optimizing financial operations and driving growth. Lastly, it ensures top-notch security and simplifies payment flows, enhancing trust, mitigating risks, and contributing to long-term success in the market.




Bridgerpay

At a glance

BridgerPay is a comprehensive payment operations platform designed to address the challenges of payment processing for businesses of all sizes. It offers automation of payment flows through a user-friendly interface, enabling businesses to scale their payments, gain valuable insights, and increase revenue. BridgerPay is built to be adaptable, accessible to any business without requiring coding, and compatible with various payment systems. Its features are continuously refined based on client feedback and evolving market needs.

Problem

BridgerPay aims to tackle the complexities and inefficiencies inherent in payment processing that hinder businesses from reaching their full potential. The company recognizes the challenges faced by merchants in managing payment flows, navigating cross-border transactions, and adapting to evolving market demands. These obstacles often result in lost revenue, operational bottlenecks, and limited scalability for businesses across various industries. BridgerPay’s mission is to democratize access to payment data and streamline payment operations for businesses of all sizes, enabling them to overcome these challenges and thrive in the competitive marketplace.

Solution

To address these pain points, BridgerPay offers the world’s first payment operations platform, equipped with advanced automation capabilities and a user-friendly interface. Their solution empowers businesses to automate all aspects of payment processing, from transaction routing to reconciliation, through a modular and customizable system reminiscent of building blocks. By providing a codeless, unified, and agnostic software solution, BridgerPay enables businesses to seamlessly integrate with multiple payment providers, optimize payment flows, and gain actionable insights to drive growth. Moreover, BridgerPay continually refines its platform based on client feedback and market dynamics, ensuring that businesses can adapt to evolving payment trends and regulatory requirements with ease.

Importance

BridgerPay’s solution is crucial for businesses because it addresses fundamental pain points in payment processing, offering a streamlined and efficient way to manage transactions. By automating payment flows and providing a unified platform, BridgerPay enables businesses to save time and resources that would otherwise be spent on manual processes and troubleshooting. This efficiency not only reduces operational costs but also minimizes the risk of errors and delays in payment processing, leading to improved customer satisfaction and retention. Additionally, BridgerPay’s ability to provide actionable insights allows businesses to make data-driven decisions to optimize their payment strategies and maximize revenue. Ultimately, by democratizing access to advanced payment technology and simplifying complex payment operations, BridgerPay empowers businesses to focus on their core activities and accelerate growth in an increasingly competitive marketplace.

 

Highlights from the Visa Innovation Program Europe Türkiye 2024 Kickoff

Visa Innovation Program Europe announced the fintechs selected for the 2024 edition in Türkiye. In the ever-evolving financial technology landscape, the Visa Innovation Program Europe stands as a cornerstone for fostering innovation and driving the future of fintech across Southern Europe. In collaboration with Hackquarters by Tenity in Türkiye, the program is a dynamic partnership platform connecting fintech companies and Visa clients throughout Southern Europe. This program empowers fintechs to address the evolving payment and commerce challenges, elevate their product offerings, and deliver groundbreaking solutions within Visa’s extensive network of partners. The Kickoff Event provided a platform for the selected fintechs of the 2024 Visa Innovation Program Europe Türkiye Edition to showcase their innovative solutions.

On April 25, 2024, the Visa Innovation Program Europe Türkiye Edition Kickoff took place at HAN Spaces Levent, marking a significant milestone in the program’s calendar. This event was not just a ceremonial gathering but a dynamic platform where the selected fintech companies from Türkiye had the opportunity to showcase their innovative solutions. 

 

The Visa Innovation Program Europe Türkiye 2024 Kickoff commenced with powerful opening remarks that perfectly captured the essence of the program’s mission and the aspirations for its future.

Kaan Akın, CCO of Tenity, opened the event with a speech that welcomed the attendees and reflected on the significant strides made by the Visa Innovation Program over the years. He highlighted the impressive milestones achieved with alum fintechs, showcasing how past participants have leveraged the program to catalyze their growth and expand their market reach. His speech vividly depicted the program’s evolution, emphasizing its role as a transformative force in the fintech sector.

 

Following Kaan’s inspirational address, Samile Mumin, General Manager at Visa Türkiye, took the stage to delve deeper into Visa’s ongoing commitment to the fintech community. She articulated Visa’s dedication to nurturing innovation and supporting fintech companies in their journey toward growth and expansion. Samile discussed how Visa, a global payments technology company, is uniquely positioned to provide invaluable support to fintechs through access to its vast network, technological resources, and industry expertise. Her speech emphasized Visa’s role as a supporter and an innovation partner, committed to helping fintech companies thrive in a competitive landscape and meet the ever-evolving demands of the digital economy.

This year, the Visa Innovation Program Europe received an impressive 274 applications, with 50 from Türkiye. After a rigorous selection process, we’re excited to announce 5 fintechs selected for the program.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these pioneering fintechs:


Bakiyem: provides new generation and functional online payment solutions tailored to meet the unique demands of various sectors.


Fimple: Established in January 2022 as a product-focused company addressing financial sector players’ problems by creating a cloud-based system with the new generation of technology and business needs.  Fimple is proposing a composable finance solution with native API’s, based on SaaS Architecture and Cloud-native microservices.  By using Fimple Transaction Composer, banks and financial institutions can develop/reconfigure products and services and offer them to their customers and fintech partners.


Finartz: offers secure and user-friendly solutions that expand organizations’ payment capabilities. It enables financial and non-financial institutions aiming to enhance their operations in the digital age to accelerate their digital transformation processes while improving customer experience. With its ready-made software solutions such as Digital Wallet, Payment, and EMV 3D Secure, alongside its expert fintech consultancy and continuous support services, Finartz assists organizations in strengthening their payment technologies.


Minted Connect: is a platform offering precious metals as a service, enabling banks, fintechs, and customer platforms to integrate precious metals seamlessly into their services with just a few lines of code. Minted Connect’s intuitive API and pre-designed workflows empower product teams to effortlessly create innovative new services, enhancing their overall offerings and generate a new revenue stream with the inclusion of precious metals.


PayWall: is a comprehensive payment orchestration platform that empowers businesses to streamline their payment processes and maximize efficiency. With advanced subscription management, PayRoute, PayJump, PayBalancer, PayWatch, centralized card storage, marketplace and alternative payment methods, PayWall offers end-to-end control over payment methods. By reducing operational burdens and directly increasing profitability, PayWall enables businesses to manage payments at a micro scale.


We invite you to dive deeper into the world of fintech innovation and discover the myriad ways you can become part of this exciting journey. Whether you’re a startup founder, a financial services professional, or simply an enthusiast for cutting-edge technology and its applications in finance, the Visa Innovation Program offers numerous avenues for involvement and collaboration.

Learn More: For those eager to understand the intricacies of the program and the innovative solutions brought forth by this year’s selected fintechs, we encourage you to visit the Visa Innovation Program Europe website. Here, you’ll find detailed information on the program’s objectives, benefits, and the diverse range of fintech innovations it supports.

Become Part of the Family: If you’re inspired by the possibilities and ready to take your fintech solution to the next level, consider applying to be part of the next cohort of the Visa Innovation Program Europe. Keep an eye on the program’s website and social media channels for application deadlines and criteria announcements.


Fintech Maddness: Highlights from the Visa Innovation Program Europe Greece, Cyprus, Malta Edition Kickoff

Visa Innovation Program Europe has announced that 6 fintechs have been selected for its 2024 edition in Greece, Cyprus, and Malta. The companies will have the opportunity to receive training and mentorship from subject matter experts to accelerate their solutions and expand internationally with the support of Visa’s global network, spanning 200 countries. The program, which runs in Greece, Cyprus, Malta, Turkey, Spain, Italy, and Portugal, has received applications from more than 1,470 fintech companies from over 40 countries since its launch in 2018. In Greece, Cyprus, and Malta, the program operates in collaboration with Eleven Ventures and Endeavor Greece. From a total of 54 applications received this year, the fintechs Andaria, Bridger Pay, Factor, Malloc, Wamo, and Zeal have been selected. 

Andaria (Malta) specializes in providing embedded finance solutions to businesses, unlocking new revenue opportunities. 

BridgerPay (Cyprus) offers omni-channel payment operations software to help businesses manage revenue and expenses.

iFactor (Romania) is an alternative lending platform for SMEs seeking to expand their growth by accelerating the analytical capabilities of banks and other lenders. 

Malloc (Cyprus) is a mobile security startup using artificial intelligence to help individuals, organizations, and businesses protect themselves from spyware and online threats. 

Wamo (Malta) helps SMEs grow by providing a one-stop service that makes financial services affordable and easy. 

Zeal (Greece/Cyprus) enables retailers to identify, categorize, and re-reach their card-paying customers by harnessing the power of personalized e-commerce.

We welcomed the above startups and the founders to the program at our Kick-Off Event held at Blender Gallery, a collaborative effort bringing together key players in the fintech landscape. 

The day was kicked off with Eva Ruiz, Southern Europe’s Head of Fintech, delivering insightful welcome remarks. She provided valuable insights into the program’s structure, objectives, and personal experiences, setting the stage for the day’s proceedings. Following Ruiz’s address, the spotlight shifted to the heart of the event: the innovative startups.

Each of the six participating companies showcased their unique ideas and visions, pitching to their fellow cohort members and key stakeholders. This segment not only served as a platform for introducing the startups but also facilitated networking and knowledge exchange among the participants. Throughout the day, executives from Visa were present, offering guidance, support, and invaluable industry expertise on the program and fintech landscape. Their presence underscored Visa’s commitment to nurturing fintech innovation and leveraging emerging technologies to shape the future of finance. Overall, the event provided a holistic overview of the Visa Innovation Program Europe, emphasizing the individual journeys of the participating fintech companies and fostering a collaborative environment conducive to growth and success.

Hosted by Endeavor Greece and Eleven, serving as program partners, they played pivotal roles in elaborating on the program’s mechanics and expectations for the participating startups. Their presentations provided invaluable insights into how the program would operate, outlining the support structures in place and offering guidance on what the startups should anticipate throughout their journey. With their expertise and commitment to fostering entrepreneurship and innovation, the partners added depth and context to the event, enriching the understanding of the program’s scope and objectives. Their presence underscored the collaborative nature of the initiative, highlighting the collective efforts aimed at driving fintech innovation and empowering startups to realize their full potential.

The 2024 edition of the Visa Innovation Program Europe was seeking the most innovative fintechs to address challenges including Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Next-gen payment experiences, Embedded Finance and Commerce Empowerment, Money Movement Flows, and Sustainable & Inclusive Future. Through the Program curriculum, fintechs will gain exposure to a broad network of proof-of-concept partners and other high-profile organizations, providing them with the opportunity to test and validate their propositions and accelerate their path to commercialization. The program involves nearly 100 fintech alumni companies and an extensive network of over 200 business partners, including retailers, neobanks, BaaS providers, e-commerce giants, and logistics companies collaborating within the innovation ecosystem.

Excited to see the trajectory of the fintech’s over the next couple years!

Learn More: For those eager to understand the intricacies of the program and the innovative solutions brought forth by this year’s selected fintechs, we encourage you to visit the Visa Innovation Program Europe website. Here, you’ll find detailed information on the program’s objectives, benefits, and the diverse range of fintech innovations it supports.

Become Part of the Family: If you’re inspired by the possibilities and ready to take your fintech solution to the next level, consider applying to be part of the next cohort of the Visa Innovation Program Europe. Keep an eye on the program’s website and social media channels for application deadlines and criteria announcements.


Innovating Finance: Highlights from the Visa Innovation Program Europe Italy Edition Kickoff

Visa Innovation Program Europe announced the fintechs selected for the 2024 edition in Italy. In the dynamic world of financial technology, the Visa Innovation Program Europe stands out as a lighthouse of innovation and collaboration. The program in collaboration with Hackquarters by Tenity, and Fintech District in Italy, serves as a dynamic partnership platform connecting fintech companies and Visa clients throughout Southern Europe. This program empowers fintechs to address the evolving payment and commerce challenges, elevate their product offerings, and deliver groundbreaking solutions within Visa’s extensive network of partners. The Kick-Off Event provided a platform for the selected fintechs of the 2024 Visa Innovation Program Europe Italy Edition to showcase their innovative solutions.

The significance of the Italy Edition Kickoff extends beyond the day’s activities. It symbolizes a growing partnership platform for fintech companies and Visa clients across Southern Europe, providing a fertile ground for innovation and collaboration. By bringing together fintech founders, partners, and corporate executives, the program aims to address the pressing challenges of the future of payment and commerce, empowering fintech companies to enhance their product offerings and deliver visionary solutions. As part of a rapidly expanding global ecosystem, participating fintechs are given the golden opportunity to connect, collaborate, and contribute to the evolution of the financial landscape, making the Italy Edition Kickoff a cornerstone event for the region’s fintech community.

Highlights from the Kickoff Event

On the 8th of April, 2024, the Visa Innovation Program Europe Italy Edition celebrated its kickoff at the dynamic at the innovative Copernico Isola for S32, marking the beginning of an exciting journey for the selected fintechs. 

The day started with a warm, welcoming speech by Filippo Manca from Visa. His address was a formality and a powerful declaration of Visa’s commitment to fostering a strong, innovative fintech ecosystem in Italy and across Southern Europe. He emphasized the significance of the Visa Innovation Program Europe as a catalyst for change, driving the future of financial services through partnership and innovation.

Manca’s address was followed by an insightful overview of the Visa Innovation Program Europe (VIPE) agenda and process, presented by Kaan Akın of Hackquarters by Tenity. This session gave the attendees a clear understanding of the program’s objectives, the support fintechs could expect, and the milestones they were set to achieve. It underscored the program’s role in bridging the gap between fintech startups and the vast network of Visa’s partners and clients, highlighting the opportunities for growth and expansion.

The morning’s presentations paved the way for the heart of the event: the “Meet the Startups” session, where selected fintechs were given the stage to pitch their innovative solutions. Osense captivated the audience with its intelligent impact platform aimed at reducing carbon footprints through AI for automated data management. Leasy followed, presenting its solution that streamlines financial operations for property managers. Unipiazza introduced its loyalty platform designed to boost local business customer retention, while Wallife shared its mission to protect individuals from risks associated with technological advancements. Viceversa rounded off the presentations by showcasing its platform that offers equity-free investments and predictive analytics to support business growth.

Each presentation demonstrated the potential of these startups to disrupt and innovate within the financial sector and underscored the diversity of challenges that the program aims to address through its support and resources.

Onboarding Flow

The afternoon was dedicated to the onboarding flow, beginning with a comprehensive presentation by Sabina Babayeva from Hackquarters by Tenity. She outlined the program process in detail, introducing the program managers and setting the expectations for the participating startups. This session provided a clear roadmap for the fintechs, detailing the support structures, milestones, and objectives that would guide their journey in the program.

Subsequently, the “Meet the Visa Team” segment allowed startups to engage directly with key Visa personnel across various departments, including VCS, VD, MSA, SALES, VCA, and Product. This meet-and-greet was an invaluable part of the onboarding process, enabling startups to understand how they could leverage Visa’s vast network and resources to scale their solutions.

Deep Dive Sessions

The day concluded with deep dive sessions, where startups could discuss their solutions in greater detail with Visa experts and receive targeted feedback and advice. These sessions provided a unique platform for in-depth discussions on each startup’s technology, business model, and market strategy, offering insights into how they could align their innovations with market needs and Visa’s strategic priorities.

This year, the Visa Innovation Program Europe received an impressive 274 applications, with 114 from Italy. After a rigorous selection process, we’re excited to announce 5 fintechs selected for the program.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these pioneering fintechs:

Osense: is an Intelligent Impact Platform that collects reliable data and reduces the carbon footprint along the entire value chain. Their solution leverages AI for automated data management, allowing companies to measure and track emissions comprehensively and accurately. 

Leasy: is a vertical b2b SaaS solution that streamlines financial processes, accounting tasks, and payments for property operators managing 1000 or fewer rentable units.

Unipiazza: is an automated Loyalty Platform that help local businesses to bring back customers more often into their stores.

Wallife: makes digital payments secure and insured to protect individuals from emerging risks arising from technological innovation and scientific progress.

Viceversa: is a leading European growth platform for the next generation of businesses. Leveraging data and AI we provide equity-free investments and predictive analytics.

 

We invite you to dive deeper into the world of fintech innovation and discover the myriad ways you can become part of this exciting journey. Whether you’re a startup founder, a financial services professional, or simply an enthusiast for cutting-edge technology and its applications in finance, the Visa Innovation Program offers numerous avenues for involvement and collaboration.

Learn More: For those eager to understand the intricacies of the program and the innovative solutions brought forth by this year’s selected fintechs, we encourage you to visit the Visa Innovation Program Europe website. Here, you’ll find detailed information on the program’s objectives, benefits, and the diverse range of fintech innovations it supports.

 

Become Part of the Family: If you’re inspired by the possibilities and ready to take your fintech solution to the next level, consider applying to be part of the next cohort of the Visa Innovation Program Europe. Keep an eye on the program’s website and social media channels for application deadlines and criteria announcements.

Visa Innovation Program Europe Announces the 8 fintechs selected for its new edition in Spain and Portugal

Visa Innovation Program Europe announced the fintechs selected for the 2024 edition in Spain and Portugal. In an era where technological innovation shapes the financial landscape, the Visa Innovation Program Europe is a beacon of progress and collaboration. The Visa Innovation Program Europe is a partnership platform for fintech companies and Visa clients across Southern Europe. This program empowers fintechs to tackle tomorrow’s payment and commerce challenges while enhancing their product propositions and delivering visionary solutions for Visa’s vast network of partners. Selected fintech companies in the Visa Innovation Program Europe can look forward to scaling opportunities and partnerships with Visa and Visa’s network, customized mentoring, perks worth more than $300,000, and opportunities to expand their businesses worldwide.

 

The importance of the Spain & Portugal Edition of this program represents a unique convergence of opportunity, innovation, and strategic partnership tailored to the vibrant fintech ecosystems of these regions. Focusing on Spain and Portugal, the program taps into a wellspring of entrepreneurial talent and innovative thinking, offering fintechs a chance to shine globally. The selected fintechs are given a golden opportunity to engage directly with Visa and its extensive network, setting the stage for collaborations that could redefine the future of payments and commerce.

Highlights from Kickoff Event

On the 4th of April, 2024, the Visa Innovation Program Europe Spain & Portugal Edition celebrated its kickoff at the dynamic Loom Salamanca space, marking the beginning of an exciting journey for the selected fintechs. This gathering wasn’t just an event; it was a gateway to innovation, providing a unique stage for groundbreaking fintech companies to showcase their solutions and vision for the future of financial services. The event was meticulously planned to ensure meaningful engagement between these fintech innovators and Visa’s extensive network, offering deep-dive discussions on metrics, challenges, and expectations.

The day started with a warm, welcoming speech by Eduardo Prieto from Visa. His opening remarks underscored the event’s significance and the Visa Innovation Program Europe’s role in shaping the future of fintech innovation. This introduction highlighted the day’s objectives and reaffirmed Visa’s commitment to fostering a collaborative fintech growth and development ecosystem.

Kaan Akin from Hackquarters by Tenity followed with a comprehensive overview of the Visa Innovation Program Europe (VIPE) agenda and process. His presentation provided valuable insights into the program’s structure, objectives, and the opportunities it presents for fintechs to scale and succeed. Kaan’s session was instrumental in setting expectations and outlining the journey ahead for the participating fintechs.

 

The core event, which featured pitches from the selected fintech startups, occurred after Kaan’s speech. This segment allowed each fintech to showcase their innovative solutions, articulate their vision for the future of payments and financial services, and demonstrate how they aim to leverage the Visa Innovation Program Europe to achieve their goals. The pitches were a testament to the diversity and ingenuity within the fintech ecosystem, highlighting solutions ranging from AI-driven analytics to advanced payment platforms and financial management tools.

This year, the Visa Innovation Program Europe received an impressive 274 applications from 25 countries, with 114 applications from Spain and Portugal. After a rigorous selection process, we’re excited to announce 8 fintechs selected for the program.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these pioneering fintechs:

Data4Deals: is a company that helps financial institutions improve their customer experience by delivering a personalized card-based rewards product (promotions in hundreds of brands offered as cash-back) to its clients while monetizing on its transactional data. The product is free of charge for the bank – Data4Deals will pay the bank a commission on every transaction done within the program.

Lemonero: is a digital lending platform with an AI-driven scoring model, onboarding process, and cash-flow analytics. We offer scalable LaaS and SaaS platforms for PSPs, Banks, and other financial institutions with a huge potential to disrupt global SMB financing. Our platform is embedded into our partner’s systems, driving very efficient scaling and natural customer acquisition by offering flexible revenue-based financing. 3x awarded as the Best digital lending platform for SMBs in Europe.

Orama: Treasury software for SMEs and Startups Manage your company’s treasury in an easy, efficient and error-free way, saving time and resources.

Paynest: is the all-in-one solution for innovative leaders focused on cost efficiency and employee engagement.  Founded in the end of 2022, Paynest has a growing presence in three European markets. The financial SaaS platform has already enabled more than 35 companies, representing a universe of more than 30,000 workers, to have a positive impact on their lives. Paynest’s offering includes streamlined expense management, salary and bonus on-demand, access to a confidential financial coach, and financial education services.

Shakers: The platform helping companies solve their tech challenges by unlocking flexible talent at scale.

Sharpei: easily integrates subscriptions, lease-to-own, and other flexible consumption options into retailers’ checkout processes, enabling circular commerce.

Starkdata: is an AI and Machine Learning company focused on extracting actionable insights from customer’s lifecycle

 

Uelz: is a developer first billing automation API for recurring revenue businesses

We invite you to dive deeper into the world of fintech innovation and discover the myriad ways you can become part of this exciting journey. Whether you’re a startup founder, a financial services professional, or simply an enthusiast for cutting-edge technology and its applications in finance, the Visa Innovation Program offers numerous avenues for involvement and collaboration.

Learn More: For those eager to understand the intricacies of the program and the innovative solutions brought forth by this year’s selected fintechs, we encourage you to visit the Visa Innovation Program Europe website. Here, you’ll find detailed information on the program’s objectives, benefits, and the diverse range of fintech innovations it supports.

 

Become Part of the Family: If you’re inspired by the possibilities and ready to take your fintech solution to the next level, consider applying to be part of the next cohort of the Visa Innovation Program Europe. Keep an eye on the program’s website and social media channels for application deadlines and criteria announcements.

Partnership Unlocked!

We are excited to announce that BOV and Loyale have joined forces, achieving a remarkable collaboration milestone! As a key component of the Visa Innovation Program Europe, companies not only gain access to Visa and Visa’s top-tier clients, but they also get the express lane to fast-track, test, validate, and unleash their game-changing solutions within Visa’s extensive ecosystem of financial institutions, corporates, and startups.


About BOV & Loyale

Bank of Valletta (BOV), based in Malta, is the oldest established financial services provider in Malta, not to mention one of the largest. As of 2014, the bank had 44 branches, 6 regional business centers, a head office, and a wealth management arm located around the Maltese Islands with representative offices in the UK, Australia, Belgium, and Italy. 

Loyale: As a VIPE ‘23 Alumni company, Loyale is a multifunctional rewards marketing platform that specializes in targeted loyalty marketing to gain and retain customers. Their mission is to help businesses automate their marketing efforts, boost sales, and increase repeat purchase rates while enhancing customer loyalty.


The Partnership

BOV and Loyale joined forces driven by two primary reasons, each playing to their respective strengths. Firstly, Loyale’s goal of smoothing the checkout experience resonated with BOV’s desire to streamline loyalty program integration. By leveraging BOV’s unique position as both an issuer and an acquirer, the partnership aimed to reduce friction for merchants and consumers alike, enhancing the overall experience. This alignment made BOV an ideal choice for Loyale’s objectives.

BOV’s long-standing reputation in Malta’s card payment landscape, coupled with Loyale’s expertise in powering household loyalty schemes, created a natural synergy. Introduced by Visa Malta, the collaboration emerged as an opportunity for BOV to modernize its loyalty platform by digitizing point awards for card payments. Recognizing Loyale’s track record and the endorsement from Visa, BOV saw the partnership as a strategic move to meet evolving customer demands while enhancing its market position.

In essence, the partnership between BOV and Loyale reflects a strategic alignment of goals and expertise. It aims to drive innovation and deliver seamless benefits to merchants and consumers in Malta.


The Collaboration 

Both parties sought to leverage each other’s strengths: Loyale’s expertise in loyalty schemes and BOV’s extensive presence in card payments, aiming to deliver seamless benefits to merchants and consumers.

‘’The collaboration’s success lies in fostering card usage habits for convenience and security, integrating payments with loyalty programs to streamline checkouts. This encourages card usage while enhancing the checkout process for businesses and customers, particularly at high turnover cashpoints. BOV’s technical expertise in payments and Loyale’s proficiency in rewards schemes were key to this success. By merging BOV’s payment technology with Loyale’s rewards understanding, we’ve created a synergy elevating user experience and delivering substantial value to customers in Malta and beyond.’’ said David Faruggia, Visa Malta Country manager. 


Value of Visa Innovation Program Europe 

The Visa Innovation Program proved pivotal for Loyale, refining its fintech offering through discussions and industry introductions, aiding product evolution and international expansion. Visa’s involvement helped navigate the complexities of internationalization, enhancing the product and providing invaluable insights for global growth. Always seeking innovative solutions, Loyale embraces partnerships that add customer value and convenience. Through this program, Visa connected the Bank of Valletta (BOV) with Loyale, facilitating collaboration and ensuring mutual success.


The Future of the Partnership

As the partnership evolves, Loyale & BOV aim to take the collaboration and solution to new heights creating a more efficient and value-driven product for their customers.


Fintech – no longer a buzzword

The Visa Innovation Program Europe, aimed at fostering collaboration among organizations to nurture startup growth and shape the digital payments and financial technology landscape, recently sparked an engaging conversation on fintech’s state.

Traditionally, emerging markets have lagged behind the US, China, and India in competitiveness, yet they hold immense untapped potential. Today, regardless of a company’s founding location or where its employees are based, global scalability is achievable, allowing firms to address universal challenges and serve customers worldwide.

 

In the context of this evolution, the fintech sector, by digitizing financial services, holds significant promise for fostering greater inclusion and narrowing socio-economic disparities across various demographics.

Reflecting on the current juncture, Sevi Vassileva, VP and General Manager of Visa for Greece, Cyprus, Malta, and Israel, describes the industry as one of the most dynamic and complex, serving as the foundational infrastructure for numerous aspects of modern life. With the added power of artificial intelligence tools, the landscape becomes both extraordinary and unpredictable.

The 6th cohort of the Visa Innovation Program Europe (VIPE) is positioned at the forefront of shaping the evolving landscape of the financial sector, particularly emphasizing the role of startups in both the present and future contexts. With a focus on issues such as payments, enterprise empowerment, impact, and sustainability, Vassileva underscores the importance of fintech companies driving innovation in critical areas like cybersecurity, data analytics, and process automation. This strategic emphasis aims to enhance both customer experiences and business operations, fostering a more seamless and efficient financial ecosystem.

Fintech is not a buzzword, it’s a reality

For years now, the Fintech industry has been one of the most relevant industries for entrepreneurship and, of course, investment received. Let’s take an outlook at the Greek ecosystem. We can see how the adoption of digital solutions in banking, wealth management, and insurance among others, continues to rise, driven by the digitization strategy of the government, regulatory changes, and the maturity of the ecosystem that has made it an enabling infrastructure for these technologies.

 

Hristo Borisov, CEO of Payhawk, agrees, adding that “today, in addition to having more infrastructure that allows for more and better fintech, we are seeing how companies like Visa understand how to work and support startups, which enables better development of the ecosystem and simplicity in the processes”.

Collaboration is and will be a major topic if we want to advance in the development of the industry. For years we have witnessed how the traditional banking industry has opened its mind in pursuit of generating customer-centric solutions, something essential for the Visa Innovation Program Europe program that, together with its partners Endeavor Greece and Eleven, seeks to invite entrepreneurs in Greece, Cyprus and Malta to scale their businesses with its tremendous local and global network.

For Petr Baron, CEO at TBI Bank, this working logic makes special sense for companies because “it’s very important to meet people, learn, and see how partners work. Of course, some will work and some won’t, but that’s the key, to persevere and see where they can take you.”

Another key point that came up in the conversation was that of investment as a driver of the sector. The rise of integrated finance, which allows companies in non-financial sectors to offer financial services to their clients without having to build a financial infrastructure from scratch, has paved the way for innovation and investment in this space.

 

For Borisov, the current scenario is very similar to the pre-investment boom era of 2021-22. He highlights that it is important to “understand where the capital is coming from and what the cost of that money is, because you cannot control the market, nor the valuations, nor the environment, you have to work with what is available”.

Why participate in Visa Innovation Program Europe: Hear it from the alumni founders, partners, and executives themselves

We “Navigated the Evolving Fintech Landscape” alongside many fintech enthusiasts including investors, entrepreneurs, VIPE Alumni, and potential new entrants to the program – reaffirming the impact the Visa Innovation program Europe has on propelling innovation in the region. To drive growth in startups, and continue to shape the landscape of digital payments and global financial technology one shared point came to light – collaboration between organizations.

Powerhouses Visa, Eleven Ventures, and Endeavor Greece have been working together, intending to catalyze growth by providing a platform for fintech startups to scale faster through collaboration with partners from the Visa network and beyond. The entrepreneurs who are chosen to be part of the program will have the opportunity to receive training and mentorship from subject matter experts, accelerating their solutions and expanding internationally through the support of Visa’s global network.

 

 

Let’s chat a little bit about the program, shall we? For Sevdalina Vassileva, VP and General Manager Visa, Greece, Cyprus, Malta, and Israel, the main impact that the program has on the ecosystems in which it is live is that through the support provided to entrepreneurs, they can “access a global but also local network with all the necessary stakeholders to be able to scale their businesses. The track record that the program has is clear proof of the tremendous impact that can be achieved through a platform like this.”

Alumni Perspective

By definition, entrepreneurs are strong and resilient, but having support networks to guide them and offer more options is crucial for them to focus on their businesses. 

“Collaboration is key to success, especially in entrepreneurship”

How does the VIPE contribute to the ultimate goals of each different and special entrepreneur?

 

For Panos Riniotis, CEO of Billy’s, the key to the program for him is the fact that the team can connect with different players in the industry offering them insights into scaling, that are hard to find otherwise. It’s very important to offer these kinds of services and connections not only to the founders themselves, but the other team members, ultimately propelling them all forward.

For George Kragiannis, Co-founder and Chief of AI at Moveo AI, the program surpassed his expectations, allowing them to interact with industry experts and present their ideas to banks and other fintech startups. This boosted their confidence in their value proposition and validated their product market fit.

The program emphasizes building a community that extends beyond its duration, offering ongoing support to alumni. Vasilis Zoupas, CEO of Woli, values the genuine and selfless support received through the program, which has helped them scale their businesses not only through partnerships with higher level banks, but start-up to start-up collaboration which arguably, are the most interesting! 


Over the years, the Visa Innovation Program Europe;  orchestrated by Endeavor and Eleven Ventures in Greece, Cyprus, Malta, has played a vital role in the growth of fintech startups worldwide. With over 1,200 applications from 62 countries and over 1,300 hours of mentoring, this sixth edition aims to continue its mission of helping companies grow, improve their value propositions, and make a meaningful impact.

Fostering Innovation and Collaboration: A Recap of the Visa Innovation Program Europe Spain Summit

Fostering Innovation and Collaboration: A Recap of the Visa Innovation Program Europe Spain Summit
Fostering Innovation and Collaboration: A Recap of the Visa Innovation Program Europe Spain Summit
On January 23, 2024, at Espacio Rastro in Madrid, Visa Innovation Program Europe Spain Summit marked a defining moment in the fintech sector.

In the heart of Madrid, at the vibrant Espacio Rastro, the fintech community witnessed a pivotal event that marked a new era in financial technology innovation. The Visa Innovation Program Europe Spain Summit, held on January 23, 2024, brought together the brightest minds and most innovative solutions in the fintech sector.

The aim of this prestigious summit was multifaceted. It served as a graduation platform for the 2nd batch of the Visa Innovation Program Europe Spain Edition, showcasing how these emerging fintechs have leveraged their unique products and services to transform the payments ecosystem potentially. More than just a ceremony, the event was a confluence of ideas, insights, and inspirations, offering unparalleled opportunities for networking, collaboration, and discovery. Entrepreneurs, investors, and industry leaders converged with a common goal: to support and accelerate the development of cutting-edge technologies that redefine the payment experience for consumers and businesses. We extend our deepest gratitude to all participants whose contributions made this event a milestone in fostering fintech innovation and collaboration.

The Visa Innovation Program Europe, which is powered by Hackquarters by Tenity, Finnovating, and Fintech Solutions in Spain, is an equity-free pilot-centered collaboration platform spanning Europe. The program enables fintechs to solve tomorrow’s payment and commerce challenges, further enhance their product propositions, and provide visionary solutions for Visa’s vast network of partners. The program appeals to fintech targeting to unlock new payment flows, advance next-gen payment experiences, empower SMEs, and build a smarter and sustainable future and embedded finance. With 111 applications received for Spain and Portugal this year, the program shortlisted 15 promising fintechs, ultimately selecting 8 to reshape the financial landscape.

Since 2022, the program has witnessed a remarkable journey. It has received 227 applications, meticulously shortlisting 27 and selecting 14 for the program. In addition, the program has facilitated over 30 mentorship sessions and 24+ hours of training and workshops. These sessions have nurtured the participating fintechs, providing them with invaluable guidance, expertise, and insights to refine their products and strategies.

The event started with welcoming remarks from Kaan Akın, VP of New Markets, Hackquarters by Tenity. Akın, known for his passion for innovation and his role in nurturing the fintech ecosystem, welcomed all attendees warmly. His speech highlighted the accomplishments of the Visa Innovation Program Europe and its impact in encouraging groundbreaking fintech solutions.
Following Akın, Eduardo Prieto, Country Manager, Visa Spain, took the stage to shed light on Visa’s global impact in the fintech sector. Prieto’s talk delved into how Visa connects businesses and drives change worldwide. He shared insights into Visa’s commitment to innovation and its role in shaping the future of payments and commerce. Prieto’s message was clear: fintech innovation is not just about technology; it’s about creating connections and building a network that supports and enhances the global economy. His talk set the stage for the day’s discussions, focusing on the power of collaboration and the endless possibilities that emerge when traditional financial institutions and fintech startups come together.

The Oldest, The Youngest

A standout session was the fireside chat titled “The Oldest, The Youngest,” moderated by Eva Ruiz of Visa and featuring Andrea Tessera from Sella. This conversation explored the intersection of traditional banking and fintech innovation. Key points discussed included Sella’s approach to innovation, their active engagement with the startup ecosystem, and how traditional banking is evolving in response to fintech advancements. Tessera shared insights into Sella’s collaborative efforts with fintechs and how these partnerships reshape the financial landscape.

Best Practices and Success Cases from the Visa Innovation Program Europe Alumni

Another highlight was a panel on the best practices and success stories from the Visa Innovation Program Europe Alumni. Elena Tamarit from Visa and Juan Guruceta from Divilo offered insights into the journey of fintech startups within the program. They discussed how participation in the program has shaped Divilo’s product strategies and business models, emphasizing the transformative impact of collaboration and mentorship.

Fintech Unleashed: AI-Driven Data Enrichment and Fraud Prevention A key panel discussion titled “Fintech Unleashed: AI-Driven Data Enrichment and Fraud Prevention” featured Kaan Akın, Maksim Hardziyenak from goscore, and João Moura from Fraudio. This session delved into the innovative use of AI in fintech, focusing on enhancing credit scoring and combating fraud. The panelists discussed how AI technology is revolutionizing how fintechs approach data analysis and fraud prevention, offering insights into their own experiences and the broader implications for the industry.
Fintech Pioneers: Employee Benefits, B2B Wallets, and Embedded Financial Services The summit also included a panel on “Fintech Pioneers: Employee Benefits, B2B Wallets, and Embedded Financial Services,” moderated by Melihcan Yücel from Visa. This discussion featured Eduardo Gaspar from Coverflex, Veljko Vasic from HolyWally, and Michael Galvin from Toqio. The panelists shared their experiences developing innovative fintech solutions, discussing the challenges and opportunities in employee benefits, B2B wallets, and embedded financial services. They highlighted how these solutions reshape business operations and enhance customer experiences in the fintech sector.
The Future of Business: AI-Driven Data Enrichment, Sustainable HR, and Enhanced Customer Loyalty One of the key sessions focused on “The Future of Business,” emphasizing the role of AI in data enrichment, the importance of sustainable HR practices, and strategies for enhancing customer loyalty. This session brought together David Hernández from Visa, Germán Lahera from Dedomena AI, Ignacio Barriendos Hoppichler from DoGood People, and Pablo Molinero from Reveni. Each speaker shared their unique perspective on how AI and other digital technologies transform business operations and customer experiences.
Another significant discussion was the “Powering Partnerships – Insights from the Corporate Frontline” panel. This session featured a dynamic conversation between Rodrigo Garcia de la Cruz from Finnovating, Álvarez Fernández from Minsait, Jaime Grau Ullastres from Telefonica, and Jesus Martin from Adyen. The panelists provided their perspectives on how traditional financial institutions adapt to technological advancements and collaborate with fintech startups. They discussed the importance of partnerships in driving innovation and growth.
These sessions not only provided a glimpse into the current innovations in fintech but also painted a picture of the future, where AI, sustainability, and strong partnerships will play crucial roles in shaping the financial services industry.

Meet the Fintechs

Coverflex: is a flexible compensation solution that enables companies to aggregate the management of compensation beyond salary. Coverflex is remodelling compensation, starting with benefits and building an all-in-one platform for any company to personalise benefits and rewards.

Dedomena AI: accelerates time-to-data and time-to-insight through its AI-powered platform that generates synthetic data and provides data enrichment capabilities. This unlocks access to unlimited high-quality data, allowing data-driven companies to improve performance and hasten development and deployment, by providing valuable insights and make more informed decisions.

DoGood People: Their software enhances sustainability culture. It measures the ESG impact of employees by completing challenges related to the SDGs. The challenges encourage sustainable behavior and enable individuals to make more informed decisions.

Fraudio: provides AI/ML fraud detection solutions for players in the payments ecosystem. With easy-to-integrate and scalable technology, it delivers fast and effective transaction monitoring and fraud detection, allowing businesses to reduce chargebacks and comply with anti-money laundering regulations.

Goscore: offers cross-border credit scoring and fair risk profiles to help lenders assess creditworthiness accurately using Open Banking data and ML. By analyzing the consumers’ financial behavior, goscore provides lenders with a real-time comprehensive financial profile, enabling them to cherry-pick sustainable customers with an intuitive and 100% automated platform.

HolyWally: is a B2B white-label wallet-as-a-service platform that enables faster time to market and a tailored experience for customers of account and card issuers. HolyWally delivers unique value through a growing partner network and a no-code Wallet Builder interface. Capabilities include card tokenization through VTS, tap-to-pay, digital receipt, and merchant-funded offers.

Reveni: transforms the ecommerce post-purchase experience, leveraging returns to increase customer loyalty and sustainability. They offer instant refunds and exchanges with no risk for merchants, resulting in higher repurchase rates and increased sales for businesses.

Toqio: is the embedded finance platform that enables businesses to integrate financial products and services into new or existing customer journeys. The platform offers a comprehensive toolkit for integrating financial products and managing various services, including lending, core banking, ERPs, CRM, and more. Toqio makes embedding financial products simple so you can focus on your core business.