Kiwibank, Xero, Callaghan Innovation and Creative HQ have unveiled plans to launch a fintech accelerator to fund and support eight Kiwi start-ups hoping to expand into global markets.
New Zealand entrepreneurs will soon be able to take their share of the global NZD$1 billion fintech industry, with Kiwibank launching the country’s first fintech accelerator.
Kiwibank chief executive, Paul Brock, said that the fintech revolution represented the opportunity for a major boost of the New Zealand economy.
“The global Fintech industry is taking off and New Zealand is ideally placed to take a leading role in the Fintech revolution,” he said.
“New Zealand has shown its ability to grow true digital-era disruptors that can foot it with the world’s best so the challenge is to build on that success so others can break into global markets.”
Brock said that the accelerator program could help Kiwi start-ups gain the support needed for taking new product offerings global.
“The Kiwibank Fintech Accelerator will stimulate Fintech innovation in New Zealand by helping new ventures prove, build and launch their ideas,” he said.
“It will do this through providing funding, expert mentoring and connecting them with investors.”
The venture, which is co-funded by Callaghan Innovation and Xero, will support start-ups using Creative HQ’s Lightning Lab accelerator. Over the course of a 14-week structured program, eight start-ups will be helped with business and digital skills and methodologies to help launch ideas into the marketplace.
“The key is to give innovative Kiwi start-ups the support they need to take new financial products and services to the global stage and grow the New Zealand economy,” Brock said.
“It’s important to us that New Zealand has a strong, local Fintech community, ensuring our financial services sector continues to evolve and grow.”