SIBS is glad to announce, in partnership with Beta-i, that the applications for the SIBS PayForward, an innovate accelerator for FinTechs, are open. This is the first program of its kind in Portugal, focused in the financial services and processes around payments.

Applications are now open and last until the 31st of January 2017. The selection phase will then take place until the 24th of February, and the 2 months of acceleration will take happen between April and June, in 2017.

Under the signature Smart Finance and Payments Accelerator, and using “Ready to move worldwide financial solutions forward?” as a motto, this first accelerator by SIBS is a 8 weeks program designed for FinTech startups. It’s focused in smart payment and financial solutions, with a working prototype, that may or not already have active users and sales.

Manuel Tânger, Head of Innovation & Corporate Acceleration at Beta-i, says

“We will give preference to the teams that show they have all the skills to develop their solution in partnership with SIBS, that can meet the business challenges proposed by SIBS, and that are willing to commit to the growth of their own business. We will only accept startups that can be in Portugal in some key moments for the program.”

And Maria Antónia Saldanha, Brand & Communications Director at SIBS, added

This program is linked to the DNA of SIBS, that was founded as a startup some 30 years ago. As a leader in the payments system, SIBS can offer entrepreneurs the right know-how and access to the financial market. With the global scope of this program, we want FinTech startups to come and stay in Portugal, and look at SIBS as their partner, specially in the payments arena.

SIBS PayForward will first select 25 startups that, after the bootcamp, will be streamlined to 10 finalists, that will go into the acceleration stage. The chosen teams will then have 8 weeks of 1×1 coaching and pitch practice sessions. They will also be submitted to several workshops & mentoring sessions, relevant to the development of the business model, and product market fit, following each weekly topic.

The program also includes access to SIBS consultants, that, together with the Beta-i network, means access to a platform of over 200 mentors e more than 500 startups, as well as top industry events.