Little Rock’s VC FinTech Accelerator Announces First Cohort

May 17, 2016

11:00 am

Gary Norcross, CEO of FIS Global – the world’s leading provider of financial technology services – kicked off the VC FinTech Accelerator at the Venture Center in Little Rock on Monday May 16. Norcross joined Tim Griffin, Lieutenant Governor of Arkansas, as well as officials from the City of Little Rock, the Little Rock Regional Chamber of Commerce and the Venture Center in welcoming the 2016 cohort to Central Arkansas.

The ten companies participating in the program were selected from 150 qualified applications that flooded in from all around the globe. Cohort teams are made up of founders from several cities around the United States and at least three foreign countries. Nearly one hundred people attended the public announcement of companies selected for the inaugural cohort.

Following the announcement, cohort founders joined Norcross and top business leaders from Little Rock at a private VIP Founders Dinner at the prestigious Capital Hotel in downtown Little Rock.

The 2016 VC FinTech Accelerator Cohort

Akouba (Chicago, Illinois USA): Cloud based end-to-end small business lending platform for regulated financial institutions.

Bleu (Los Angeles, California USA): Mobile payment and merchant point of sale system enabling bluetooth (beacon) payments.

Dream Forward Financial 401(k) (New York, New York USA): Provides low-cost retirement plans with new technology designed to boost savings among middle and low income employees.

Flutterwave (Mountain View, California USA & Lagos, Nigeria): Technology and infrastructure for seamlessly and securely processing payments, remittances and digital services across Africa for banked and unbanked.

FundSeeder (Wesport, Connecticut USA): Data and performance analytics platform for traders designed to globalize and democratize the capital allocation process.

LumoXchange (Atlanta, Georgia; Geneva, Switzerland, and Senegal, West Africa): Low cost remittance marketplace to compare exchange rates in countries across the world and send money online using local FX.

Hexanika (New York, New York USA): Regulatory compliance and reporting system that provides data abstraction, normalization and transformation from disparate systems within a bank.

Monotto (Charleston, South Carolina USA): Personal finance solution automating the process of saving and investing.

Mortgage Peer Network (North Little Rock, Arkansas USA): Allows institutions to contribute anonymous data to measure performance against peers, monitor customer service and generate leads through social media marketing.

Public Funds Investment Tracking and Report (PFITR) (St. Louis, Missouri USA): Bond and fixed income pricing, analytics, compliance and controls for public funds investment and other investor.

Cohort founders will spend the next 12 weeks in Little Rock engaged in an accelerator model adapted from Silicon Valley’s Y Combinator. In addition to intense curriculum focused on rapid customer acquisition and growth, founders will access targeted mentorship from leading experts and executives with FIS, a global leader in financial technology services. The program will conclude with an investor demo day at the Clinton Presidential Center on Wednesday August 3, 2016.

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A self-proclaimed “Startup Nerd,” Steve Rice is the principle of SR Communications, a strategic communications and leadership consultancy. Steve also founded the Start Here Initiative, a community-led effort that seeks to close the gap that exists for women and minorities in access to capital in entrepreneurism. He routinely writes on inclusion, entrepreneurism, and leadership for local, regional and national publications.

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