Visa, the global payment platform has announced the finalists of the Kenyan edition of the Visa Everywhere Initiative competition.

Visa Everywhere Initiative (VEI) is a global open innovation competition that enables startups pitch their innovative solutions to solve tomorrow’s payment and commerce challenges.

VEI Kenya edition is seeking to support startups that are creating solutions around access to finance, new customers and markets, and MSME business services. These startups could be in various sectors such as health, agriculture, education, logistics, urban mobility, insurance, and the Gig economy. Towards this, Visa has partnered with Loop, a smart money management platform.

In addition to monetary prizes, VEI winners will gain access and exposure to Visa’s vast network of partners in the banking, merchant, VC, and government sectors. The winners also benefit mentorship as well as receiving recognition from one of the world’s most trusted and valuable brands.

This year’s prizes for the Kenyan edition are:

  • VEI Kenya Winner: $20,000 USD
  •  VEI Kenya Audience Favorite: $10,000 USD
  • VEI Kenya Social Impact Award: $10,000 USD

The Kenyan finalists will take part in an in-person competition on Thursday July 6, 2023, where a panel of judges will pick the winner. The event will be broadcast live on Visa Africa’s Youtube channel.

The Kenyan winner will then proceed to the Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa (CEMEA) finals which will take place on July 27. Here they will get a chance to fight out for a slot at the global finale, to be held on September 19 at TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco.

Here is a short profile of the finalists.

  •  Ndovu; this a wealth management platform for Africa. The CEO Radhika has over 12 years of experience in the financial services industry where she led the investment platforms team at BlackRock
    (London) as a Relationship Director.
  •  Africa Blockchain Center; It is one of the leading companies focused on
    capacity building in the blockchain technology sector. The CEO Jeff Mkungusi has worked as an engineer across multiple
    companies in the Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 space.
  • Leja; This is the ultimate finance management app for MSMEs. The Co-founder & COO Morgane Kablan honed her expertise at BNP Paribas Asset Management, where she contributed to integrate sustainability principles into their $500B AUM investment funds.
  • Ai-fluence; This is Africa’s 1st AI driven Influencer Marketing Platform. Nelson Aseka who is the Co-Founder and CEO 20+ years’ experience working at the intersection of technology and marketing. In three short years of operation, Nelson has grown and Scaled AI fluence to working in 20+ countries Across Africa, Asia and Europe.
  • Paylend; This startup specializes in digitizing micro and small businesses across Africa. Eliutherius Juma who is the CEO is a performance-driven entrepreneur with a background in software engineering.

Since its launch in 2015, the VEI program has helped startups from over 100 countries collectively raise more than $2.5 billion in funding, addressing one of the biggest challenges faced by early-stage entrepreneurs.