The demonetization policy may have prompted a majority of traditional systems like banks and financial organizations to explore the untapped potential of fintech companies. However, some of these had been keeping an eagle-eye on the sector long before the country’s drive to ‘go cashless’. While most Indian banks have their own strategies to expand digitally, YES BANK has adhered to the ART approach- Alliances, Relationships and Technology (A.R.T). As a part of this strategy, YES BANK has partnered with some of the leading fintech companies to deliver unique and innovative banking and financial solutions to its customers.
As of now, YES BANK has partnered with over 100+ Fintech startups across different verticals including payments, regulatory technology, and wealth management, among others.
YES BANK in partnership with T Hub, Anthill and LetsTalkPayments, is spearheading an initiative based on this ART model, through its recently-launched business accelerator programme for fintech startups.
753 startups from across 18 different countries applied for the 15-week programme. Of these, 35 startups were shortlisted and got a chance to present their product or service to a panel. Following this, 11 startups offering diversified fintech services were selected to be a part of the first cohort for the programme.
Through the programme, the participating startups will get access to YES BANK’s powerful network of over 2 million retail, 10,000+ SME and 5000+ corporate customers. Along with this, they will also receive funding up to $1 million through VC partners, without experiencing any upfront equity commitment.
Welcoming the startups into the cohort Mr. Rana Kapoor, MD & CEO, YES BANK said
”YES FINTECH Accelerator takes forward YES BANK’s A.R.T model – Alliances, Relationships Technology to provide innovating banking solutions to our customers and provides start-ups a platform for creating sustainable and market ready products. We are really excited about the inaugural cohort and believe that the 15 week program will provide an ideal springboard for these 12 startups to graduate from innovative products to scalable businesses with access to YES BANK’s digital banking infrastructure as well as our robust customer network”
From credit risk and early warning signals to alternate landings, scoring mechanisms and companies working on block-chain, this group of 11 startups caters to a variety of branched services in the fintech space. The selected startups include SoCash, Signzy, Rupeeseed, Redcarpet, Paykey, Numberz, Morph.Ai, FRS Labs, Click & Pay, Authme and Anytime Loan.
Speaking about the programme’s objective, Prasad Vanga, founder and CEO of Anthill, referred to the speed and the ability that startups incorporate into larger corporates.
According to him, the accelerator will help startups tackle two of their biggest challenges – growth and scale. Since both require a substantial amount of time, value and resources, a distribution channel like YES BANK could help them achieve these more easily.
“It’s not a typical accelerator that we are launching. Most startup accelerators are more about ‘how to startup a startup’ instead of ‘how to scale a startup’,” he said.
Vanga believes that there couldn’t be a better time to tap into the startup ecosystem which caters to the digital market in post-demonetisation India. “We wanted to target areas of disruption or solution-building across YES Bank, instead of focusing on one division,” he adds.
Apart from the benefits for the selected startups, the idea of co-creation and co-innovation is one of the key drivers for the programme.
To Aditya Khurjekar, CEO of LetsTalkPayments – the idea is to select a group of companies which are offering tailor-made solutions for very specific needs of the Indian market today, and forming a symbiotic relationship between corporates and startups.
“Startups need the big brands to help them realise the full potential of their product or solution. And banks are realizing the limits of creative thinking that can happen in IT shops. It’s not a risk, it’s only a win-win,” he said.
YES BANK and its partners are hoping to launch more of these programmes in the future, with an aim of hosting up to two cohorts a year.