Event

WEBINAR: Three proven strategies for making fintech inclusive

Three Key Ways.png

BFA’s fintech accelerator, Catalyst Fund, has new lessons to share about how #inclusivefintech companies are broadening and deepening #financialinclusion in emerging markets. We have been working with 20 global startups and accelerating their ability to offer more affordable, better-designed and time-saving products and services. Directed at the financial inclusion community, donors, and investors, we invite you to our webinar to learn about how our companies are doing business differently - changing the paradigm for serving low-income customers and succeeding in emerging markets.

Join us for a webinar as we discuss more on November 14, 2018 at 9 AM EST.


Join The Next Frontier of Fintech VC (During SOCAP 2018)

Catalyst Fund, Cathay Innovation, 500 Startups, and Orange SV invite you to a special gathering for pioneering investors in emerging market fintech. Come meet leading investors and high impact entrepreneurs building fintech solutions in the world’s fastest growing markets.

Agenda:

6:30- 7:00 PM- Panel discussion on "The Next Frontier of Fintech Investing - The Emerging Market Opportunity”,  moderated by David del Ser.

Panelists:

Alex Lazarow: Alex is a Director with Cathay Innovation, a global venture capital firm based in San Francisco. Cathay Innovation was founded around the conviction that empowering digital entrepreneurs with a global platform can help them accomplish their vision. He is also a Kauffman Fellow, earned an MBA from Harvard Business School and is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) charterholder. He has a bachelor of commerce in international business and finance from the University of Manitoba. He is a Term Member with the Council on Foreign Relations.

Sheel Mohnot: Sheel is a Managing Partner at 500 FinTech. His own startup experience includes 2 successful FinTech exits – a payments company and a high-stakes auction company. He formerly worked as a financial services consultant at BCG and started his FinTech career at the non-profit p2p lender Kiva. Sheel holds an MBA from the University of Michigan and a BS from Carnegie Mellon.

Moses Choi- Moses Choi is a seasoned investor and financial services professional and has executed over $15Bn in capital markets and principal investment transactions. He currently leads strategy, product innovation, and deal sourcing in support of Orange’s financial services and mobile money business units. Prior to joining Orange, Moses was Vice President at Morgan Stanley, where he focused on cross-asset origination and represented the firm on the ICMA’s Green Bond Principles Executive Committee. He is a contributor to the World Economic Forum and holds a master’s degree from the Fletcher School at Tufts University and a BS and BA from Cornell University

7:00- 7:15 PM-   Catalyst Fund CEOs will share what they're building to expand the inclusion and financial health of low income customers in emerging markets.

7:15- 8:30 PM- Stay for cocktails and some fun  networking with investors, industry experts and entrepreneurs.

If you’re an investor or a donor and are interested in attending, then reach out to akasera@bfaglobal.com


Inclusive Fintech Happy Hour with Catalyst Fund, Accion Venture Lab & Quona Capital (during SOCAP18)

SM w:Blurb.png

Join us for another Inclusive Fintech Happy Hour hosted by BFA's Catalyst Fund, Accion Venture Lab and Quona Capital. After the success of last year's event, we bring together again the ecosystem actors in inclusive fintech and financial inclusion - innovators, funders, and influencers - for a night of creative exchanges during SOCAP 2018 at The Dorian, San Francisco from 6 PM- 8 PM.

Network and share a few drinks with investors, entrepreneurs, industry partners, and like-minded peers, advancing impact through financial products and services for emerging markets around the world. Don't miss out, RSVP today.



Webinar Series: The Catalyst Fund Toolkits

DFS Toolkit Banner Mailchimp.png

Launching a startup is not easy, especially when you don’t always have the right resources and tools to help you succeed. The Catalyst Fund Toolkit offers you tools across three main areas: customer trust creation, risk management and product/market fit. These tools are tailored to the needs of startups that serve low-income customers in emerging markets, through our experience working with early-stage fintech companies around the world.

As the manager of Catalyst Fund, BFA, is pleased to host this special webinar series covering each of these toolkits in the coming weeks:


Webinar: Design for Trust

Trust is an essential factor in financial transactions, but what is trust made up of? Fintech companies providing digital financial services often find it difficult to build trust with their customers because of a lack of physical contact. However, managing the principles of competency, appearance, control, transparency, & commitment can be great drivers for building trust with customers.

DATE & TIME:

February 14, 2018

10-11 AM EST


Webinar: De-Risk your Fintech Startup

Running an innovative startup is not without its set of risks and challenges. But understanding these risks, monitoring and managing them with mitigation strategies can help lower a company's risk profile. The second webinar of the series provides a framework for de-risking internal and external factors, while helping founders and CEOs see the overall picture of their firm's health and how to take action on their high priority risks.

The panelists for this webinar include Maelis Carraro from BFA and Jonathan Duarte, CEO of Escala Educacion. 

ESCALA is a Catalyst company and works as a higher-education savings program for lower and middle-income families in Colombia. Jonathan is passionate about growing the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Colombia and is an Industrial Engineer from Georgia Institute of Technology (USA) and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Maelis manages Catalyst Fund at BFA and has previously worked directly on microfinance product development for Grameen Bank in Bangladesh, on development and climate change policy issues for the Organization for Economic Development and Cooperation (OECD), and impact investing for Global Partnerships, a not-for-profit impact investing fund dedicated to alleviating poverty in Latin America.

 
 
 

DATE & TIME:

March 15, 2018

10-11 AM EST


Webinar: Get to Product/Market Fit

One of the biggest questions early-stage companies have to answer is whether their product is right for their targeted market. Product-Market Fit can be thought of as the measure of how well your product satisfies the market. The Product/ Market toolkit covers the startup journey from the moment a startup identifies a pain-point, a passion or a hunch, and go all the way up to the final stage of optimization and scale up. Scaling up would not be possible for startups without a perfect combination of visibility, desirability, and feasibility of the product, in the market they are serving.

DATE & TIME:

TBD. You can pre-register below and we will contact you when date is finalized.

Catalyst Fund Toolkits for Early-Stage Ventures

View webinar presentation below

View webinar presentation below

Customer-centric design, agile product management, and innovative technologies are helping fintech ventures create better and more targeted value propositions for their customers, especially in emerging markets. How can early-stage ventures harness this powerful combination to win over their customers and ensure their businesses thrive? Working closely with inclusive fintech startups at Catalyst Fund, a philanthropic fund aiming to accelerate fintech innovation in emerging economies, supported by Gates Foundation and JP Morgan Chase & Co., they have distilled practical insights on how to support companies as they grow. They have built tools that enable startups to build trust with their customers, assess risks and develop mitigation plans, achieve product-market fit and apply machine learning strategies. Maelis Carraro, program manager of Catalyst Fund, will give ANDE members an overview of these tools and show how other enterprises could utilize these frameworks for their own business needs and aspirations. Learn more about our toolkits.

Webinar recording during ANDE Sector update at min 31:31

Presenters

Maelis Carraro | Senior Associate | BFA

Maelis is a Senior Associate at BFA. She is the Program Manager of Catalyst Fund, an innovative fund supporting early-stage inclusive fintech startups in emerging markets with grant seed capital, mentorship, and tailored business advisory services. Maelis joined BFA from the International Finance Corporation (World Bank Group), where she advised financial institutions in emerging markets on business strategy, digital product development, and customer acquisition strategies to serve underserved and low-income customers. Maelis previously also worked on impact investing to support small and medium enterprises in Africa and Latin America for Global Partnerships and on microfinance product research for Grameen Bank and the OECD. Maelis also co-founded RemitMas – a digital remittances service for Latino immigrants in the US, which sparked her passion for entrepreneurship and fintech. Maelis holds an MBA from Columbia Business School and a Master in International Affairs from Columbia School of International and Public Affairs. She received her BA Cum Laude from University College London, where she majored in Political Science and Economics. 

Jane del Ser | Senior Associate | BFA

Jane is a Senior Associate with the Insights & Influence team at BFA. Her areas of expertise include product management and marketing and strategic marketing communications. She brings over ten years experience working with startups, social enterprises and nonprofits leading Strategy, MarCom and Product in hi-tech, mobileand social innovation. Jane most recently served as Managing Director at Center4, an initiative in NYC to increase uptake of technology by health and human service nonprofits to transform how services are deliveredand improve outcomes for people served.

A Fintech Approach to Financial Inclusion

3492673512_58c5a667d8_b.jpg

We are pleased to announce that BFA will be hosting a Financial Inclusion Week event, which will be part of a week of global conversation exploring the most important steps to achieving full financial inclusion.  Partners from around the world are holding conversations to explore this year’s theme New Products, New Partnerships, New Potential.

BFA will host a webinar focused on the benefits, challenges and insights of fintech approaches to financial inclusion as part of Financial Inclusion Week. The webinar will highlight key findings from three of BFA’s global programs: Catalyst Fund, FIBR and OPTIX.

Date:

Thursday, November 2nd, 2017

Time:

9:00am - 10.30 am EST

Building Trust in Digital Financial Services: The Promise and Challenges of Inclusive Fintech in India

Photo by The White Ribbon Alliance Flicker Creative Commons

Photo by The White Ribbon Alliance Flicker Creative Commons

India is at the forefront of building an ecosystem that encourages innovation in digital financial services for low-income customers. New technologies have created new opportunities to expand access to financial services and empower consumers. But many digital solutions are slow to scale as consumers often distrust what is unfamiliar. Building trust with low-income consumers underpins the success of any digital financial product. So, from product design to product delivery, how can financial service providers build and maintain customer trust in digital solutions?

Tailored to Indian fintech startups, financial institutions, investors and development practitioners, join Catalyst Fund for an afternoon for a panel discussion and workshop on how to design for trust in digital financial services along the customer journey.

Date:

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Location:

The Grand Ball Room, Leela Palace Hotel

Program

  • 1.30 pm: Registration
  • 2:00 pm to 2:10 pm: Welcome by Maneesha Chadha, Head of Global Philanthropy, J.P. Morgan
  • 2:10 pm to 3:00 pm: Panel - The Promise and Challenges of Inclusive Fintech in India: Why Trust Matters
  • 3:00 pm to 3:15 pm: Coffee Break
  • 3:15 pm to 6:15 pm: Workshop - Designing for Trust in DFS
  • 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm: BFA Networking Reception

Panel: The Promise and Challenges of Inclusive Fintech in India: Why Trust Matters

Moderator:  

Maelis Carraro, Associate at BFA, and Program Manager, Catalyst Fund 

Panelists:

  • Maneesha Chadha, Head of Global Philanthropy, J.P. Morgan 
  • Rohit Bhatia, CEO, Paylatr
  • David del Ser, Director of Fintech Practice at BFA and Catalyst Fund
  • Smita Aggarwal, Director of Investments, Omidyar Network

Workshop: How to design for trust in DFS?

The workshop explores the key elements of trust in digital financial services and how companies can integrate it at every step of the customer journey. Participants will walk away with practical tips on how to create customer trust from product design to product delivery. 

Practical workshop Facilitated by:

Maelis Carraro, Catalyst Fund Program Manager

Workshop Materials

Read the Catalyst Fund Design for Trust Toolkit


Networking Reception

Brief Remarks from:

  • David del Ser, Director of Fintech Practice at BFA and Catalyst Fund
  • Rajesh Bansal, Senior Advisor at BFA

Speaker Profiles

This event is organized by Catalyst Fund, J.P. Morgan and BFA and is by invitation only. Contact us to request invitation here.

A Spotlight on Inclusive Fintech @SOCAP 2017

SOCAP.jpeg

Catalyst Fund in partnership with JPMorgan Chase & Co, is hosting the first spotlight on inclusive fintech at SOCAP. 

  • When: October 10-13, 2017
  • Where: Fort Mason Center, San Francisco, CA

SOCAP is the world’s leading conference on social capital markets—a gathering where powerful ideas are sparked and game changing partnerships get started. The conference brings together social entrepreneurs, impact investors, funders, business leaders and other innovators and problem solvers from across the world. Now in its 10th year, SOCAP is a catalyst for much needed change, creating a vibrant market for ventures that support people, planet, and profits.

Here are some of the upcoming panels organized by Catalyst Fund:

(Session dates and times confirmed as of 9/15/2017)

Risky business: How can we lower risks to scale innovative fintech companies?

One of the key challenges for impact investors is figuring out the level of risk involved in early-stage companies. But what if that risk could be somewhat removed to pave the way for more money to flow in innovative solutions? In this session investors and startups of Catalyst Fund will discuss ways to de-risk investments in fintech startups in emerging markets by working with a group of like-minded investors, funders, entrepreneurs and fintech specialists.

Date & Time:

Wednesday, October 11, 2017
10:45am - 11:45am PST

Moderator:

Berit Ashla, VP, Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors

Panelists:

  1. Maelis Carraro, Program Manager of Catalyst Fund and Associate at BFA
  2. Tahira Dosani, Managing Director, Accion Venture Lab 
  3. Frank Schutte, CEO, Mobilife
  4. Colleen Briggs, Executive Director of Community Innovation, Office of Corporate Responsibility at JPMorgan Chase & Co. (TBD)

Scaling FinTech for Inclusion around the world

FinTech innovators have the potential to increase access to, improve the quality of,  and reduce the cost of financial services for the underserved at scale. But to scale successfully, they need access to different kinds of capital in their growth trajectory. This session explores the capital and resources needs of inclusive fintechs. Startups at different stages of venture development, funders, and investors speak to the challenges of identifying the right capital at the right time.

Date & Time:

Wednesday, October 11, 2017
2:30 pm - 3:30 pm PST

Moderator:

Vikas Raj, MD, Accion Venture Lab

Panelists:

  1. Christopher Sheehan, CEO, WorldCover
  2. Allison Lu, VP of Credit, Tala 
  3. Alex Lazarow, Partner, Omidyar Network 
  4. Jacob Haar, Managing Partner, Community Investment Management

Hype or Reality? AI for Financial Inclusion

Artificial Intelligence is today’s buzzword. AI has the potential to reduce costs, boost client engagement and improve business decision-making. When targeting low-income customers, AI can mean better-margins, higher employment rates and manageable fees on financial services. But how is AI currently benefiting fintech companies and what challenges are they encountering? This session covers how fintechs, financial institutions and Silicon Valley investors view AI’s potential in global financial services and the implications for low-income customers.

Date & Time:

Thursday, October 12, 2017
11:00 am - 12:00 pm PST

Moderator:

David del Ser, Program Director of Catalyst Fund and Inclusive Fintech Director at BFA 

Panelists

  1. Felipe Cunha, CEO, ToGarantido 
  2. Sheel Mohnot, Partner, 500 Startups
  3. Qiuyan Xu, Chief Data Scientist, Cignifi

Designing Inclusive Financial Products that Build Trust

Trust is the backbone of business success and it is ever more important when offering digital financial services to low income customers. From product design to product delivery, how can startups build and maintain trust with their customers? This panel discusses the key elements of trust building in inclusive product design, the challenges faced by early stage companies and a roadmap to build trust along the customer journey.

Date & Time:

Thursday, October 12, 2017
2:45 pm - 3:45 pm PST

Moderator:

Maelis Carraro, Program Manager of Catalyst Fund and Associate at BFA

Panelists

  1. Rohit Bhatia, CEO, PayLatr
  2. Kristen Berman, Common Cents Lab
  3. Michael Mori, Dalberg Design Impact Group (DIG)

Powering Solutions for a Financially Healthy America

Since 2015 the Financial Solutions Lab has supported 27 companies who are building products that improve the financial health of American consumers. Companies from the Lab's first two graduating classes raised over $135MM in follow on capital and are now serving nearly 1.5MM Americans. This session will explore some of the learnings and insights from this program which will have relevance for grant-makers, investors and entrepreneurs Featuring founders from the Lab, the session will highlight how technology is improving the financial health of American consumers through innovative distribution and servicing models that open up new markets and could have broad long-term implications on the U.S. financial services industry.

Date & Time:

Thursday, October 12, 2017
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm PST

Moderator

Ryan Falvey, Managing Director, the Financial Solutions Lab at the Center for Financial Services Innovation 

Panelists:

  1. Colleen Briggs, Executive Director of Community Innovation, Office of Corporate Responsibility at JPMorgan Chase & Co.
  2. Morgan Conbere, Co-Founder and CEO of Token Transit 
  3. Nico Barawid, International Partnerships, Nova Credit
  4. Jerry Nemorin, CEO and Founder of Lendstreet

Below are other Catalyst Fund events taking place during SOCAP

The Catalyst Fund and JPMC Reception and Demo Day at SOCAP

  • When: Wednesday, October 11 at 7pm to 9:30pm PST
  • Location: Sartle Library + Embark Gallery
  • Program: Demo Day of Catalyst Fund companies and networking
  • Request invitation by contacting Kelly Nguyen: knguyen@bfaglobal.com

 

Catalyst Fund, a sponsor of The Good Capital Project 2017

>> Read the Good Capital Launch Recap

The Good Capital Project (GCP), the next step in bringing impact investment into the mainstream. Through a design thinking process, the GCP will convene and leverage expertise from the financial, design, academic, non-profit, governmental and impact communities to drive greater collaboration, partnerships and accelerate capital flows into purpose-driven investments. The project will focus on generating innovative and sustainable solutions to align the capital markets with the human needs of tomorrow. 

Catalyst Fund 

When: June 19th, 2017

Where: Convene, Midtown East, 730 Third Avenue, NYC 

CEO Forum and the Fintech for Inclusion Global Summit 2017

Catalyst Fund is supporting the upcoming CEO Forum & Fintech for Inclusion Global Summit 2017, organized by Accion Venture Lab and Quona Capital and hosted by FMO, taking place in the Hague, Netherlands, from June 21st to 23rd, 2017. Catalyst Fund investees  Destacame.cl, Escala Educación, PayGo Energy, Atikus, Grafica, Comunidad4Uno, Harvesting and Paylatr will be in attendance.


Event: The CEO Forum 

When: 21-22 June 2017

Where: FMO headquarters (Anna van Saksenlaan 71, 2593 HW Den Haag, Netherlands)

A closed-door gathering of CEOs or other C-level representatives of portfolio companies of Venture Lab, Quona Capital, FMO, and Catalyst Fund that are advancing financial inclusion through their products and services. The CEO Forum will provide participants with opportunities to engage in practical discussions, openly speak about successes and failures, and share learnings in areas such as sales, partnerships, recruiting, fundraising, and scaling. In addition, the Forum will offer valuable knowledge-sharing, development opportunities, and industry insights – all of which are sought by resource-strapped startup management. 


Event: The Fintech for Inclusion Global Summit

When: 23 June 2017

Where: FMO headquarters (Anna van Saksenlaan 71, 2593 HW Den Haag, Netherlands)

The Summit, to which investors, thought leaders, experts, key market participants and other fintech CEOs will be invited, will consist of dynamic exchange of insights and network building between these leading actors in the fintech for inclusion space. Participants represent companies and institutions whose products and services or investment focus cover a variety of themes and business models such as small business and consumer digital lending, alternative credit scoring, payments, and other enabling technologies. With the attendance of over 150 selected fintech startups, investors, financial services and other industry leaders, the Summit will enable a robust exchange of ideas and to yield concrete opportunities for collaboration and partnerships across borders and sectors.

Harvesting, a Catalyst Fund company, will be at AI for Good Global Summit

Plenary 6: AI for Common Good and Sustainable Living

Join Catalyst Fund at the AI for Good Global Summit for a plenary on AI for Common Good and Sustainable Living. This session will explore how AI can accelerate and advance the development and democratization of solutions to promote common good and enable sustainable living. Our Data and APIs Manager, Matt Grasser will be speaking at the AI for Prosperity panel.

Panel: AI for Prosperity,

When: Day 2, 8 June 2017

Venue:  ITU Headquarters, Rue de Varembé, 2, Geneva, Switzerland


XPRIZE believes Artificial Intelligence will be central to solving humanity's grand challenges. Solutions to pressing problems related to health and wellbeing, education, energy, environment, and other domains important to XPRIZE can be found by capitalizing on the unprecedented quantities of data and recent progress in emerging AI technologies.

To support our mission to build a bridge to abundance for all, XPRIZE is, together with the United Nations (UN) specialized agency, the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), hosting the inaugural AI for Good Global Summit, in Geneva Jun 7-9, 2017. This annual summit will gather government officials, UN agencies, NGO’s, industry leaders, and AI experts to address how artificial intelligence can help achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and design a first UN-backed “AI Guiding Principles” to provide guidelines on ethical, technical, standardization, societal and policy issues related to AI.

 

 

Recap of Catalyst Fund at FLII 2017

What have we learned about catalyzing inclusive fintech startups so far?

By Jonathan Uriarte

Thoughts from the Catalyst Fund Panel at FLII 2017

On Feb 15th, the Catalyst Fund hosted a panel about supporting early-stage inclusive fintech companies at FLII 2017 (The Latin American Impact Investing Forum). Held in Mérida, Mexico and in its seventh year, FLII brings together investors, entrepreneurs, nonprofits and other ecosystem players working hard to bring real impact in Latin America.

The panel, Catalyst Fund: Our Approach and the Lessons Learned from Supporting Inclusive Fintech Startups, covered how the Catalyst Fund model compares to other accelerators or incubators and more specifically, how Catalyst Fund tailors its advisory engagements using a range of startup tools all the while rolling up their sleeves working alongside the startup teams. Speaking were some Catalyst Fund investees: Jorge Camus from Destacame.cl, Miguel Duhalt from Comunidad4Uno, myself, Jonathan Duarte Escala Educación, Catalyst Fund partner Mathieu Albrieux AccionVenture Lab and moderator Gabriela Zapata from BFA.

Read full post on our blog.


Catalyst Fund Event Info at FLII 2017

Join Catalyst Fund at FLII 2017 (Foro Latinoamericano de Inversión de Impacto) for a panel on the challenges and lessons learned working with inclusive fintech startups. Featuring our investees from different stages in the investment life cycle and sectors ranging from education, and financial services for the low income customer, 

Panel: Catalyst Fund: Our approach and lessons learned from supporting inclusive fintech startups

Moderator: Gabriela Zapata, senior associate at BFA

Panelists:

Event info:

Feb 15th, 2017 3:30pm-4:30 local time
Hyatt Regency
Mérida, México

Full FLII program agenda here:

Three approaches to accelerating innovative fintech ventures that serve the poor

Early stage inclusive fintech startups, in developed and emerging markets alike, have a hard time securing the capital and expertise needed to test their ideas and bring products to market. They’re too early for most investors, but their ideas have great potential to scale. What solutions exist to support them? Three innovative accelerators are helping fintech startups pioneer transformative businesses that empower the poor.

Join us to hear from Catalyst Fund, the Digital Financial Services Innovation Lab (DFS Lab) and the Financial Solutions Lab and how they are supporting fintech startups around the world to spur innovation in financial inclusion.  


Panel: Inclusive Fintech for Good - Impact Hub Seattle

Moderator: Victoria Griffith, The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Catalyst Fund: David del Ser
DFS Lab: Jake Kendall
Financial Services Lab: Colleen Briggs
Destácame.cl, startup: Sebastian Ugarte

Where: 
Impact Hub Seattle
220 Second Ave South, Seattle WA

When:
February 16th, 2017
12-2PM PST
Lunch provided, with happy hour to follow


Catalyst Fund, supported by BMGF and JPMorgan Chase & Co, aims to accelerate innovative fintech startups delivering digital financial services to low income customers in emerging markets, through seed grant capital, hands-on advice and mentorship by a group of impact investors.

Digital Financial Services Innovation Lab (DFS Lab) is an incubator for high-potential entrepreneurs working to introduce innovative FinTech solutions to the developing world. Via tailored guidance and hands-on support from leading experts, the organization helps refine, grow and launch businesses that can transform the lives of the poorest, profitably and at scale. 

The Financial Solutions Lab, managed by CFSI and supported by JPMorgan Chase, is a US-based community of startups, financial services companies and nonprofit organizations building solutions to improve the financial lives of Americans.