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FIS Launches Networking Program for FinTech Startups

FIS

Financial services technology firm FIS has launched its 2024 FIS Fintech Hangout Series.

The program, announced Wednesday (Jan. 31), connects FinTech startups, investors, financial institutions, FIS experts and participants from the FIS Fintech Accelerator Program. 

“This series will spark meaningful conversations, share best practices and showcase the amazing work of the participating FinTechs,” FIS said in a news release. 

The program kicked off earlier this month with a “deep dive” into the importance of risk and compliance, “one of the biggest barriers to entry for prospective FinTechs,” FIS added.

The accelerator program — applications for which open in March — is a 12-week program that helps FinTechs refine their product models and scale their operations, with participants hearing from bankers, subject matter experts and financial service executives. 

FIS’ efforts are happening during a difficult time for startups, as funding for newer companies continues to be tight.

As PYMNTS reported this week, venture capitalists have amassed a pool of $311 billion in unspent cash — so-called “dry powder” — as funding for the tech sector slows down. 

“There is dry powder for sure, but it’s not like the world is going to be flooded with VC money again,” Ibrahim Ajami, head of ventures at Mubadala Capital, part of the $276 billion Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund Mubadala Investment Company, told the Financial Times (FT).

And with that flood of money drying up, the FT said, startup failures have doubled, with companies like Hopin and Convoy going out of business last year.

“In some ways, dry powder is a mirage. It’s a theoretical number,” Nigel Dawn, global head of private capital advisory at investment bank Evercore, told the news outlet. “Portfolio companies in venture funds are feeling the cash squeeze more than ever: the idea that you can simply grow and grow with no profitability in sight and the cash spigot will always be on is gone.”

This month also saw Visa announce it would support the entrance of accelerator and VC firm Plug and Play into the Canadian FinTech market. The companies had launched a similar accelerator program for startups in the U.S.

The Silicon Valley-based Plug and Play connects startups, corporations, VC firms, universities and government agencies, and offers corporate innovation programs while also organizing startup accelerator programs.