Best Tech Startups to Watch in 2023

Through this Special Edition, Visa and Emirates NBD are on lookout for international Fintech players in variety of fields, including credit risk, fraud management, & cybersecurity.

Best Tech Startups to Watch in 2023

The Visa Everywhere Initiative (VEI), a global open innovation competition where startups pitch their creative solutions to address tomorrow’s payment and commerce challenges, is accepting applications for its 2023 edition in Pakistan right now.

Winners of the VEI receive cash awards as well as access to and exposure from Visa’s extensive networks of partners in the banking, merchant, venture capital, and governmental sectors. The winners also gain from being recognised by one of the most prestigious and valuable brands in the world.

Pakistan is urged by the World Bank to streamline its tax system and increase potential revenue On July 27, the Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Africa (CEMEA) finals will be live-streamed on TechCrunch, a renowned website dedicated to the startup ecosystem and the technology sector.

The startup that triumphs at the CEMEA Regionals will compete in the global finals on September 19 at TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco. This year, the Fintechs Innovating in Risk Excellence, or “FIIRE,” Award will be made available for the first time by Visa’s VEI CEMEA.

Through this Special Edition, Visa and Emirates NBD are on the lookout for international Fintech players in a variety of fields, including credit risk, fraud management, and cybersecurity.

The winning Fintech will receive a $25,000 prize and the chance to work with Emirates NBD, a top bank group in the MENAT (Middle East, North Africa, and Turkey) region, after a joint review by Visa and Emirates NBD representatives.

The Visa Everywhere Initiative, according to Umar Khan, Visa’s Country Manager for Pakistan, “is a platform that empowers fintechs and entrepreneurs to showcase the most innovative, significant solutions in the world of payments and commerce.”

“Fintechs have the potential to provide broad social benefits to the markets they operate in, especially when it comes to providing financial services to those who have historically been underserved.”

This is because their technology-driven, cutting-edge solutions. At Visa, we think that having access to the digital economy promotes equitable, inclusive growth, and the VEI is a crucial tool for assisting the innovators who are leading the way in this field.

With a network of nearly 12,000 startups from around the world, VEI has assisted startups from more than 100 countries in raising more than $16 billion USD in funding since its launch in 2015.

Over 4,000 startups from five regions participated in the competition last year, in which VEI awarded more than $530,000 USD in prizes. Nigeria’s ThriveAgric won the $100,000 USD VEI Global grand prize in VEI 2022. Also winning was ThriveAgric for the $20,000 USD Visa Direct prize.

Visa Everywhere Initiative is seeking innovative and ambitious entrepreneurs who are uplifting communities by solving payment and commerce challenges faced by businesses of all sizes and sectors, including:

Enablers of digital services and digital issuers; Blockchain and cryptocurrency, Crowdfunding, Banking-as-a-Service, BIN sponsors, Issuer/processors and Program managers

Digital issuance; Blockchain and cryptocurrency, Alternative lending, Personal financial management, Money transfer and remittance, Digital banking (aka neo banks), Digital wallets, peer-to-peer (P2P) and transfers, Employee benefits, Payables and Corporate cards (aka expense management)

Value-add for merchants and/or consumers in the finance space; Data and analytics, ID, authentication, and security, InsurTech, Loyalty, Merchant services and tools, Process and payment infrastructure, Retail technology and Other

Small- and medium-sized business recovery; Money movement (disbursements, Intra-account, P2P vendor, and payments), Acceptance (e-commerce and mobile acceptance), Risk management (chargebacks, etc.), Brand management (Community building, etc.) and Other
New categories for 2023:

Sustainable fintechs; Risk and Urban mobility

This year’s prizes for VEI CEMEA Regional Finales (July 27):

1st place: $20,000 USD
Audience Favorites: $10,000 USD
Risk Winner: $25,000 USD
The application deadline for VEI is May 14th.