Inclusion Plus is a global competition to identify and support entrepreneurs, non-profits, and existing companies that help advance financial inclusion for an estimated two billion people across the world.
The Iberian initiative attracted entrepreneurs, non-profit organizations, and other entities focused on responding to improve the financial health of low and middle income people.
Spain’s OpSeeker took home the Iberian grand prize of €40,000, with GoParity coming in second at €25,000, Goin (Spain) at third with €15,000, and Raize (Portugal) and Alda (Spain) each won €4,000 apiece as finalists.
“We are proud to support Portuguese and Spanish startups such as OpSeeker, GoParity, Goin, Raize, and Alda, winners of this edition of the Inclusion Plus Awards, to develop their projects that will undoubtedly contribute to a paradigm shift in the Iberian financial sector,” said Oscar Herencia, General Director of MetLife Spain in a statement.
More than 35 volunteers from MetLife participated in the initiative as mentors and jurors, providing advice, support, and partnerships that will help these initiatives to progress and grow.
GoParity is a crowdlending platform that brings together companies and organizations seeking financing for sustainability projects, with citizens looking for more advantageous investment opportunities that have a positive impact on society and the planet.
The Lisbon startup is an innovative marketplace that democratizes investment opportunities in sustainable energy by providing a competitive investment solution that has a real impact in the energy transition.
It does so by addressing the needs observed by SMEs when trying to implement small to medium Renewable Energy or Energy Efficiency projects.
GoParity uses peer-to-peer lending to provide citizens with profitable investment opportunities and SMEs with competitive financing to make more sustainable energy projects happen.
Inclusion Plus is a series of country-based competitions focusing on addressing the financial inclusion needs of low to moderate income households in that country.
The US-based competition represents the culmination of a three-year program that included nine prior competitions. By year-end, Inclusion Plus will have engaged nearly 500 organizations across Ireland, China, India, Mexico, Egypt, Lebanon, Bangladesh, Spain, Portugal, Australia, South Korea, and the US.
Finalists will then compete at a closing event in October for a total of $150,000 in grant funding from MetLife Foundation.
The final event of Inclusion Plus will have finalists from all competitions convene at a global summit in New York City. They will be joined by thought leaders in the field of financial inclusion and will participate in design-thinking and behavioral economics workshops and cross-border learning sessions—with the goal of continuing to develop, refine and deliver their products and services to improve the financial health of millions of people globally.