The third edition of the Fintech acceleration bootcamp, Catapult: Kickstarter 2022 Summer Edition, concluded on Friday 1st of July 2022 with the cohort’s final pitches on the main stage at the ICT Spring 2022 in front of an esteemed jury and a public audience from the Luxembourg finance and technology ecosystem.
The programme was developed by the LHoFT Foundation in close collaboration with the Ministry of the Economy in Luxembourg. Ten leading Fintech startups went through a two-weeks bootcamp. For the first time since the Catapult: Kickstarter launch in June 2021, the LHoFT was delighted to welcome the participants physically in Luxembourg.
After an intensive programme where the participants attended classes centred on scaling their business and, critically, met with many mentors, stakeholders and potential partners from the Luxembourg ecosystem, the 10 participants pitched their solutions on the final day of ICT Spring 2022 on the main stage.
All the presentations were of an incredibly high quality and made it difficult for the judges to decide on just five that would become Laureates of the programme and get access to up to €50,000 in subsidies from the Ministry of Economy to help them continue on their journey of growth within Luxembourg. After a tough deliberation, the jury decided that 10BE5, finmarie, Fundvis, Lynxai and Umazi are the outstanding Laureates of this Catapult: Kickstarter 2022 Summer Edition.
Franz Fayot, Minister of the Economy stated: “I am glad that participants to the 2022 Summer Edition of Catapult:Kickstarter have been able to join in a physical format and meet in person with the Luxembourg ecosystem. I am looking forward for the selected companies to launch operations in Luxembourg while contributing to the diversification of the local Fintech and start-up ecosystems through innovative solutions in fields such as data, Fundtech, identity management and sustainable finance”.
Targeting Fintech startups from around the world, Catapult: Kickstarter 2022 Summer Edition aimed to provide effective support and critical guidance to the ten firms, selected from over 180 applications, in their growth. In order to efficiently leverage the strengths of Luxembourg’s community and capabilities, the selected firms focused on delivering services to financial institutions (B2B), with particular emphasis on Insurtech, Investment tech, Legaltech, Regtech, Fundtech, AI, as well as ESG.
Catapult: Kickstarter 2022 Summer Edition was tailored to the particular stage of the participating Fintechs and structured around classroom tutorials, experts talks, customer discovery, one-to-one meetings, pitching sessions, industry discovery sessions and mentorship sessions. The ten participating Fintech companies have been supported across those two weeks by no less than 20 partners, including Compellio, Luxembourg For Finance (LFF), Luxembourg Sustainable Finance Initiative (LSFI) and Middlegame Ventures (MGV), guiding them through business models, funding strategies and industry product testing.
This summer bootcamp culminated with a live pitch show on Friday 1st of July 2022, gathering all the partners and supporters of the programme. The 10 companies delivered their final pitches, leveraging the input they had received from the programme partners, experts and mentors over the course of the two-weeks bootcamp.
The jury composed of Mrs Nicoletta Centofanti, Sustainability Adviser and General Manager at LSFI, Mr Frédéric Becker, Project Manager at Luxembourg Ministry of the Economy, Mr Owen Reynolds, Associate at Expon Capital, Mr Corentin Dubucq, Head of Retail Central Europe+Turkey & Marketing Innovation at BNP Paribas, and Mr Nasir Zubairi, CEO of the LHoFT.
Mr Nasir Zubairi, CEO of LHoFT Foundation, concluded: “The ten participating firms were outstanding businesses with significant relevance to the Luxembourg financial centre, addressing some key challenges of and opportunities for local actors. The feedback from both the Luxembourg industry and the participants themselves has been humbling in its praise of the programme and the participating firms. Critically, it is great that all ten firms have already advanced in discussions with potential Luxembourg clients and partners. Special congratulations of course to the five laureates of the programme that demonstrated exceptional propositions for Luxembourg.”
Tiago Freire de Andrade from Lynxai said: ”The Catapult: Kickstarter program from the LHoFT was an amazing experience. It not only opened the Luxembourg market to us, but it made us realize it is probably the best market in the world for us.”
Cindy van Niekerk from Umazi added: “LHoFT Catapult: Kickstarter is truly a catapult experience. Connecting and enabling startups to move and engage with many organisations at a level that would otherwise take months to achieve. We can’t wait for the next chapter.”
The 10 Selected Fintech Startups of the Catapult: Kickstarter 2022 Summer Edition are:
1. 10BE5 – United Kingdom
10BE5 is building a natural language processing-powered platform that automates the drafting of capital markets disclosures and related processes. Their solutions automate substantive legal work. They are domain experts and design their products with input from top law firms. Their products help reduce staff burnout, free up capacity to undertake other complex work, and reduce risks through the elimination of mechanical errors. They also reduce the overall cost of access to capital markets for companies.
2. Artificial Intelligence Finance Ltd – Ireland
Artificial Intelligence Finance Ltd provides a digital Saas platform for customers to apply for mortgages and life assurance through brokers & banks: application, document upload, AML, KYC, Open banking, Underwriting, CRM. This B2B Saas platform makes mortgages easier, faster, and better for everybody through a ‘one touch’ digital application.
3. Botfiler – Ireland
Botfiler enables more cross-border eCommerce sales. Their technology platform enables this by integrating with leading cloud accounting platforms and online marketplaces, so that local and cross-border VAT reporting can be automated. Botfiler also features review capabilities so reporting errors are spotted and fixed quickly.
4. Etiq AI – UNited Kingdom
ETIQ helps companies to test and monitor their predictive models. For data teams, ETIQ can help to maximise the value they get from their data and AI without having to invest a lot of time and money. It tests data & ML algorithms, identifying issues, bias and preventing accuracy loss in both building & production stages. It consists of 4 pillars of offering and mainly used by data teams, it’s flexible and customisable and allows to quickly and easily run tests on data & ML algorithms. Users can identify and correct issues, ensure compliance and mitigate unintended bias – so they can cut costs and reduce risk across their organisations.
5. finmarie – Germany
With a mission to help women become financially independent, finmarie builds mobile and desktop consumer financial technology with smart tooling and a hybrid human-digital model of financial and insurance advisory.
6. Fundvis S.A – Luxembourg
Fundvis offers a workflow management Software for the Fund Industry. They bring the entire industry onto one platform, digitalise their processes and thereby allowing the setup and management of AIF Funds globally.
7. iCEIBA – United Kingdom
iCEIBA launched the Dispute Recovery Platform to help small and medium businesses which lose money due to distressed contracts, unresolved commercial claims, and litigations.They provide a low-cost, hands-off, and risk-free solution that uses tech to analyse, manage recovery and monetize distressed contracts and commercial claims.
8. Lynxai – United States
Lynxai offers a data-driven platform that makes ESG investment more efficient. Lynxai provides quantitative and qualitative data to facilitate the investment analysis. The provided data is adapted to the client ESG standards. The company helps the client navigate through any government regulations – like EU Taxonomy – and control any red flags from their investments. Lynxai also collects data from non-financial reports, big data and score providers, institutional news, Twitter, Reddit, Glassdoor, blogs, social media and offline sources, so that every information is covered.
9. Nu Credits – United Kingdom
Nu Credits is a trade finance marketplace that connects SMEs with global lenders (Challenger Banks, Fintech Lenders, Crypto Exchanges, Family Offices and Alternative Asset Investment Managers) in Europe and Asia. They are solving the SMEs trade finance liquidity gap issue by providing multi capital sources lending products such as Purchase Order Finance (B2B BNPL), Receivable Finance, Leasing and Revolving Credit Lines to meet their working capital needs for both cross-border and domestic trades and offering verified multi-dimensional credit data SaaS solution to lenders to make faster and more accurate credits underwriting decision to SMEs.
10. Umazi – United Kingdom
Umazi is an enterprise identity platform, enabling all businesses to share verified client identity data leveraging Web3/DLT. Umazi facilitates the creation of business identity wallets to allow for streamlined business verification and by design enables continuous real time compliance. Umazi is disrupting the existing due diligence manual, cumbersome and time-consuming due diligence processes by providing those who need access to validated corporate identification with data that they do not have access to today. On the enterprises looking to prove their identity, Umazi facilitates faster verification while allowing them to control their own data (self-sovereign identity management). The enterprise credentials are cryptographically verified to provide a full audit trail on the company, further removing the need to dig up 5years of data evidence.