Fintech Hive: Italian fintech seen from Dubai

By partnering with international fintech hubs and local leading operators, Fintech District wants to create an international bridge for national startups and be a soft-landing platform to attract new entrants from abroad. Today we meet Fintech Hive. Raja Al Mazrouei, Executive Vice President of DIFC FinTech Hive, tells us about its activities and projects but also its point of view with regard to the Italian fintech ecosystem.

What is Fintech Hive’s mission? What are your key values?

As the region’s first-of-its-kind accelerator programme, FinTech Hive at DIFC aims to bring together established financial institutions, government entities, technology partners and creative entrepreneurs to help create cutting-edge technologies which meet the changing needs of the region’s financial community. At the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), we recognise the increasing importance of FinTech in our region and how it is becoming a key pillar in the future of financial services.

At FinTech Hive, our core value is financial inclusivity. The potential that these creative startups and the FinTech sector have for greater financial inclusion in the region is unprecedented. As such, we have invested in our infrastructure and partner networks to ensure that this unrealised potential is unlocked. We will continue to enhance and expand our programme to allow for more cohesive innovation and entrepreneurship culture to be instilled across the region.

What activities do you offer for fintech startups?

FinTech Hive offers FinTech, RegTech, InsurTech and Islamic FinTech startups the opportunity to develop, test and adapt their technologies, in collaboration with top executives from DIFC and regional established financial institutions. The 12-week programme ends by offering the startups the opportunity to showcase their final products in front of potential investors from the large players in the financial industry.

The programme is also supported by DIFC’s sophisticated platform offering dedicated commercial licenses for FinTech, RegTech, InsurTech and Islamic FinTech firms. This cost-effective scheme allows budding start-ups from the FinTech sector to benefit from the Centre’s world-class infrastructure and ecosystem at feasible rates. FinTech Hive also offers mentorship from leading financial institutions, a dedicated collaborative space to work, and a community of like-minded individuals as well as access to the largest financial community in the region.

What do you expect from the MoU with Fintech District?

As part of this MoU, we expect both FinTech Hive and FinTech District to share knowledge on best practice and enable innovative businesses to operate even more seamlessly between Dubai and Milan. We also wish to explore the various opportunities to facilitate bilateral FinTech access between the two cities and foster a venture capital ecosystem in both markets. As with all our partnerships, this partnership will benefit startups, entrepreneurs and large established entities by enhancing access to investment, unlocking business opportunities and engaging new audiences and innovative products or ideas.

How do you consider the Italian fintech ecosystem? Are there any types of fintech startups that are of particular interest to you?

The Italian FinTech ecosystem holds immense opportunities for creative innovators across Europe. More specifically, Milan ranks #2 in Europe in terms of the number of organisations that support innovation, according to B-Hive, a European collaborative innovation fintech platform. Milan’s dynamic and creative environment makes it a hotspot for entrepreneurship, comprising 7 research centres, one technological park and several spin-offs. As such, we see immense opportunity to work closely with Fintech District and bring fresh, creative ideas to fruition.

FinTech Hive is particularly interested in technologies that can enhance financial inclusion in the MEASA region and beyond. These startups tend to focus on payment solutions, lending, and process automation, which allows for easy banking access through smartphones or digital devices.

Among the innovation hubs, we work with is Copenhagen Fintech. Read the interview!

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Copenhagen and Milan united by fintech

Copenhagen FinTech is the Danish cluster organization for Fintech, Finance and IT. Copenhagen FinTech is one of the international hubs we collaborate with to enhance the Italian fintech ecosystem and to strengthen the European one, to attract capital in Italy and support the startups of our community in their internationalization.

Copenhagen FinTech was founded in 2009 and has developed different projects, research and educational programs within areas such as high-performance computing, IT security, future of money and payments, processes and digitization and fintech.

After the signing of the MoU between Copenhagen Fintech and Fintech District, we asked Simon Schou, Chief Innovation Officer of this hub, to tell us about their activities and expectations.

What is Copenhagen Fintech ’s mission? What are your key values?

Copenhagen FinTech is a nonprofit organization in Copenhagen working to boost its fintech ecosystem centred there. We aim to be the world’s most inclusive and expansive financial ecosystem by connecting FinTech startups and financial institutions with superior research and consumer needs – and scaling the resulting solutions internationally

What activities do you offer for fintech startups?

Coworking facilities, Incubation Programs, Investor connect programs, Partner matchmaking, Acceleration programs, Global scaling programs.

What do you expect from the MoU with the Fintech District?

The strengthening of the “bridge” between Italy and Denmark – meaning to make it easier for Danish Fintech Startups to explore possibilities in Italy and for Italian Fintech Startups to explore these possibilities in Denmark

How do you consider the Italian fintech ecosystem? Are there any types of fintech startups that are of particular interest to you?

We don’t have that overview at the moment – we have banks and insurance partners looking for talented solutions in every segment of fintech and at the same time, we have startups looking for Italian partners/Clients in every segment.

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