The Inclusive Fintech 50 initiative leverages a competitive process led by an independent judging panel of experts to identify 50 early-stage fintechs driving financial inclusion and resilience.
We are looking for early-stage fintechs in advanced or emerging markets that offer a solution among credit, insurance, payments & remittances, savings & personal financial management, or infrastructure addressing the unique challenges of underserved customer segments (typically low-income populations and small businesses).
Over the last three competitions, IF50 has attracted over 1,000 eligible applicants. Past winners have collectively increased their funding by $620 million in the year following their win. Winners benefit from access to zero-cost tools such as Visa’s Practical Business Skills and Practical Money Skills. The 2022 theme is “Making Digitalization Count.”
The 50 selected fintechs will receive significant visibility among investors and partners through features in the media, a knowledge product, and by being featured at Financial Inclusion Week. All applicants can opt-in to share contact information with the IF50 Investors Network, a group of leading investors who are keen to meet early-stage inclusive fintechs.
Inclusive Fintech 50 is Sponsored by Visa Inc, MetLife Foundation, Jersey Overseas Aid & Comic Relief, with support from Accion and IFC. The initiative is implemented by the Center for Financial Inclusion, a global think tank that uses rigorous research and advocacy to advance inclusive financial systems for low-income people around the world.
- reasonable amount of time and doesn’t require multiple rounds of phone calls or interviews.
- Our selection criteria are comprehensive and rigorous, but straightforward.
- We worked with investors to create questions that get beyond the fluff to identify startups poised for success.
- A judging panel of industry experts – including founders and investors – will select the winners.
What sets IF50 apart?
Applicants can opt-in to share contact information with the IF50 Investors’ Network, a group of leading investors who are keen to learn more about early-stage inclusive fintechs. Winners benefit from access to zero-cost tools such as Visa’s Practical Business Skills and Practical Money Skills.
Exclusive focus on early-stage fintechs driving financial inclusion across the globe.
Selection criteria are aligned with investor priorities and help inform investors of top early-stage, impact-driven fintechs; Sponsors likewise enjoy early visibility into fintech trends and potential leaders in key products and markets.
A diverse judging panel of industry experts representing venture capital, fintech, banking, and other industries contribute to competition prestige; Sponsors have recommended judges each year from their innovation and tech teams.
Findings from IF50 applicants were shared with the broader industry in an Insights Report and through events at Financial Inclusion Week; Sponsors have appeared on panels and shared their organizations’ strategic goals and partnerships. Check out these industry-leading insights from the 2021 and 2020 competitions.
Eligible applicants will be scored against the following criteria:
Investors are increasingly interested in finding fintechs that are filling market gaps and contributing to inclusion. Applicants will be assessed on the degree to which their target market includes underserved people and the problem that the startup is aiming to solve.
Innovation is more than disruption, it’s about offering a new value proposition. Applicants will be assessed on whether their business model reduces costs, improves a product experience and opens up financial services to previously underserved people.
Investors are also looking for solutions that can have a noticeable impact on the more than three billion financially underserved people. Judges will review applicants’ growth model, internal capacity, unit economics, growth strategy, and total addressable market.
It’s important that a product or service be able to show some indication of traction. Judges will review the product or solution’s stage of development, the startup’s funding and/or revenue, existing customer base, and other indicators that show early-stage traction.
Fintechs applying to IF50 must have the following criteria:
- Must focus on including unserved or underserved customers.
- Must be Series B or earlier.
- Must have at least one product and one user.
- Can be B2C (business-to-consumer), B2B (business-to-business) or B2B2C (business to business to consumer).
- Must have a solution in credit, insurance, payments & remittances, savings & personal financial management, or infrastructure addressing challenges of underserved segments.
- Must be legally registered in their country of operation and not subject to US sanctions programs administered by OFAC.
The individual applying for the Inclusive Fintech 50 must also meet the applicant’s eligibility criteria and the submission eligibility criteria set forth in the Official Rules. Or apply here: