US’ Swave, Umati Capital, Kytabu and UK’s Trade have recieved a cash award of $25,000 each for their innovations to redefine the future.
The four were part of teams from 18 countries that presented 77 working prototypes to Citi executives and technology influencers at four Demo Days in April held in Jerusalem, London, Nairobi and Warsaw. Finalists competed for an opportunity to take their technologies into production with Citi’s support, plus a share of $100,000 in cash awards and a suite of services from.
Other Citi Mobile Challenge EMEA Award Recipients include Avoka andCraft Silicon’s Elma for Mobile Commerce Payment.
‘‘We are thrilled to be selected as one of the top innovators in financial services products across Europe, Middle East & Africa, says Ivan Mbowa one of the Umati Capital co-founders. ‘’Following the win, we plan to work with Citi to provide our technology-driven finance solutions to the SME suppliers of Citi’s corporate clients. We believe that Citi is the perfect partner to drive adoption of our product in Kenya and all other markets in which Citi is present within Sub-Saharan Africa.’’
Umati Supply Chain Finance Solution was voted the most innovative solution for businesses. The Umati solution is a suite of mobile and web applications which allow corporations and their SME suppliers to access working capital advances against outstanding payments.
‘’We will continue to use ICT platforms to increase access to financial services. We believe that there is a credit gap that can only be addressed through the use of scalable technology platforms,’’ another co-founder Munyutu Waigi says of the award.
Umati Capital is a start-up financial services company that aims to revolutionize access to finance through the consistent and innovative use of technology. Launched in September 2012, Umati is a non-bank financial institution focused on the provision of credit and related payment technologies.
The firm is currently focused within agri-business supply chains, retailer value chains and fast moving consumer goods manufacturers. It leverages proprietary technology to provide branchless financial services to small scale suppliers, trading companies and industrial processors.
First held in Latin America and the U.S. in 2014, the Citi Mobile Challenge has received participation from thousands of developers across 101 countries. Citi plans to expand the Mobile Challenge to deepen developer engagement, connect directly with new innovation hubs, and uncover fresh approaches to expanding financial inclusion through technology.