Epiphyte and MatchMove beat out 13 other finalists to take the top prizes in SWIFT’s Innotribe Startup Challenge, Wednesday at Sibos 2014.
Epiphyte won “Top Startup” with its first product cBridge, providing banks with the technology for real-time international transactions at reduced costs. As “Top Startup” of the Challenge, Epiphyte has won the US$50,000 cash prize. MatchMove won the title of “Top Innovator” with its Wallet aimed at the 500+ million ‘uncarded’ smartphone users in emerging countries connecting daily to the internet but unable to make purchases.
“For us, Innotribe has been a fantastic opportunity to build deeper connections with the banking community. It is very exciting to see the banking community embrace our technology and compliance solution. We believe that distributed technologies are a key innovation in the future of finance and we are very excited to help banks and financial institutions to integrate them into their systems,” said Edan Yago, CEO of Epiphyte.
Shailesh Naik, CEO of Matchmove, called Innotribe “one of the most prestigious discovery platforms for new innovations” for financial technology. “For us to win at this event brings global credibility and valuable exposure,” he said. “The coaching sessions, combined with the excellent organisation of the event truly help growing companies like ours to expand their business very effectively and efficiently. The positive impact that Innotribe has had on us will be felt for a long time to come.”
Over 280 early-stage startups and growth-stage innovators from around the world entered the Innotribe Startup Challenge this year. A panel of over 500 industry experts, senior innovation executives at global financial institutions, venture capitalists and angel investors, selected 47 semi-finalists to participate in the regional showcases in London, Singapore and New York earlier this year. These judges evaluated the companies on which was most likely to be an important innovation in the future of the financial industry. Fifteen of the 47 companies were then selected as finalists to compete in the Grand Finale.
“Looking back to the 2014 Startup Challenge, I believe we had an amazing journey,” said Fabian Vandenreydt, Head of Markets Management, Innotribe and the SWIFT Institute at SWIFT. “I hope the finalists enjoyed the extraordinary visibility, relationship development opportunities, and access to bank decision-makers and highly qualified industry experts. I am delighted that we are able to support Epiphyte and MatchMove and give them the opportunity to develop their talent.”
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