startAD, the Abu Dhabi-based startup accelerator powered by Tamkeen and anchored at NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD), has announced that applications are now open for the ninth edition of its Corporate Sprint Accelerator (CSA 9).
In partnership with Ripple’s University Blockchain Research Initiative (UBRI), the three-week market access accelerator will enable global startups to bring cutting-edge FinTech innovation to the UAE. Accepted startups will be sponsored to travel to the UAE and showcase their ventures at GITEX, the region’s largest tech trade show which will run from October 10-14, this year.
The engagement will also include training, networking, brand building, and one-on-one meetings with prominent investors, media, and sought-after members of the region’s startup ecosystem. In addition, participants will have the opportunity to win the prestigious XRPL grant to work on solutions for the open source, decentralized and permissionless public blockchain - worth USD 25,000, through a fast-tracked application process.
"In partnership with startAD, Ripple is excited to support fintech startups leveraging blockchain and crypto to develop new use cases and businesses that solve real world problems. These technologies will play a pivotal role in the future of finance, and entrepreneurs have a tremendous opportunity to make a global impact by building innovative solutions that will usher in a more inclusive and accessible financial system," Director of University Partnerships at Ripple Lauren Weymouth said.
The program is open to startups building solutions or technologies in the fintech space. Participants will be at the pre-seed or seed rounds of growth, having completed the product development phase with a ready minimum viable product in place. A minimum of two team members is required, giving them the capability to dedicate resources to the program.
Focus areas for CSA 9 include but are not limited to blockchain-powered applications, P2P lending, insurance, digital distribution platforms for financial products, cryptocurrencies and remittances, identity and authentication, payment gateways, financial education, and financial inclusion. Other program partners include Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) and VentureSouq. Applications close on August 28, 2022.
Since its inception, startAD has supported more than 380 startups, resulting in 66 pilots. These startups have generated USD 70m in revenues and have raised USD 100 m in funding. The 8th edition of startAD’s Corporate Sprint Accelerator has been judged as one of the top 10 fintech accelerators in the region and resulted in five pilots and partnerships announcements and USD 25,000 awarded in grants.