PayPal Pairs To Support Financial Inclusion Startups

PayPal and Village Capital announced Tuesday (March 8) their global collaboration efforts aimed at supporting startups that serve the financially excluded.

This relationship between PayPal and Village Capital, a venture development organization that finds, trains and funds entrepreneurs working to solve global challenges, aims to improve access to financial services across the globe — or, in this case, the underserved in Latin America, the U.S. and India.

Through this collaboration and with the support of local ecosystem partners, the two companies will operate three venture development programs in 2016 to support emerging FinTech innovators in those regions.

“At PayPal, we believe that affordable, convenient and secure financial services should be a right for everyone and not a privilege for the affluent,” said Franz Paasche, VP of corporate affairs at PayPal. “Through our expanded relationship with Village Capital, we’re pleased to help build a more supportive ecosystem for FinTech social impact entrepreneurs, which we see as critical to our vision of improving the financial health of underserved individuals and businesses around the world.”

Touted as a first-of-its-kind initiative, PayPal and Village Capital will serve roughly 40 additional FinTech startup ventures in order to power progress toward increasing financial participation for underserved populations.

PayPal employees will serve each market by providing their expertise and serving as speakers, ongoing program advisors and one-on-one mentors for the participating ventures.

“The traditional system of brick-and-mortar financial institutions simply isn’t meeting the needs of millions of people across the world. With PayPal, we’ll be supporting entrepreneurs across the world who are developing solutions that help families save, invest, access credit and, ultimately, build wealth,” added Ross Baird, executive director of Village Capital.

The first program to launch this year will start in April in Mexico City. This will kick off with support from U.S.-based investment management firm BlackRock and local engagement from Mexico-based financial services provider Crédito Real. Village Capital has identified 10 early-stage ventures from across Mexico that will participate in the venture development program.

To begin recruitment for the Village Capital FinTech: US 2016 program, PayPal and Village Capital will also host the 2016 FinTech Entrepreneur Showcase on March 12 during SXSW, providing an opportunity for FinTech entrepreneurs from across the United States to demonstrate their solutions.

From there, 10 leading candidates for the upcoming program will present their ventures to an invitation-only group of investors, community leaders and potential partners. They’ll receive feedback from a panel of sector leaders, including PayPal, The Case Foundation, Kapor Center for Social Impact and Student Loan Genius, a Village Capital graduate and portfolio company.