Joust, which was a finalist for the 2020 SXSW Innovation Awards, said it will offer any affected users zero payment processing fees on its FDIC-insured free bank account.
Joust is a banking app targeting freelancers and small businesses. SXSW was canceled on March 6 due to concerns over the spread of the coronavirus.
“We are devastated to share this news with you. ‘The show must go on’ is in our DNA, and this is the first time in 34 years that the March event will not take place. We are now working through the ramifications of this unprecedented situation,” a press release said.
“As recently as Wednesday (Feb. 4), Austin Public Health stated that ‘there’s no evidence that closing SXSW or any other gatherings will make the community safer.’ However, this situation evolved rapidly, and we honor and respect the city of Austin’s decision. We are committed to doing our part to help protect our staff, attendees and fellow Austinites,” stated the release.
Thousands of businesses around the world have been affected by the cancellation. Many freelancers, self-employed workers and small businesses have been hit with a loss of income.
"We are a local Austin company, so we can see firsthand how the SXSW cancellation has affected our economy," said Joust CEO Lamine Zarrad. "There are independent workers and small businesses that depend on the income brought in by this yearly event, and we want to help them."
Joust will use its invoice factoring tool, PayArmour, to fund the invoices. Qualified users can submit invoices with the Joust app, select “get paid now” and receive payment.