Blockchain-based marketplace DeBuNe, bitcoin wallet Cryptosigma and blockchain equity issuer Otonomos, have been accepted to the first batch of Startupbootcamp (SBC) Fintech Singapore’s accelerator program. The startups will be given funding, free office space, access to business support services and a large network of industry experts and venture capitalists.
The three digital currency startups join seven other startups in the program, which are made up of peer-to-peer wallets, money management apps, a social network for financial trading and more. All of the startups will receive three months of acceleration, 24,000 Singapore dollars (about $18,000 USD) and access to pilot customers, industry data, APIs and capital from SBC partners, such as DBS Bank, MasterCard and Route 66 Ventures.
“Since the beginning of the year, we have scoured the Asia Pacific and the globe for the most fascinating, innovative and promising fintech startups,” said Startupbootcamp FinTech Global COO, Markus Gnirck. “With 300 applications it shows that fintech in Asia is on the rise to tackle local problems with the potential for global scale. We have met close to 200 startups, visited 12 financial hubs across APAC and beyond. So we feel confident that the 10 teams selected showcase the very best that financial services and technology has to offer.”
Blockchain Apps For Asia
By digital currency standards, Bitcoin has seen a lot of adoption in China, the Philippines and other parts of Asia, but blockchain apps have not been as prevalent in the region as they have been in places such as Silicon Valley. These startups hope to use the different uses of the blockchain to solve problems unique to the region.
Created by former IT professional Roberto Capodieci, DeBuNe dreams big and aims to give Asian companies a more transparent way to conduct business by using the blockchain of alternative cryptocurrency, NXT. The startup, which is focusing on small- to medium-sized businesses, will use the transaction data stored on the blockchain to give businesses a reputation that can boost trade.
Cryptosigma, on the other hand, is a more conventional Bitcoin product, as it allows people to send and receive bitcoin and exchange between the digital currency and fiat money. The app does have several extra features that come with the app, such as a debit card, the ability to withdraw money at ATMs and send money to friends and family. The app hopes to give users the benefits of cryptocurrency without having to touch or hold the actual digital currency.
Calling themselves the world’s first blockchain-chartered company, Otonomos, aims to simplify the process of issuing equity for businesses in Asia. The startup will allow anyone to create company shares on the Bitcoin blockchain. Benefits include sending equity peer-to-peer, being able to crowdfund equity or add new private investors easily. Though in legally uncertain waters, their blockchain “incorporation” service is live.
All of these startups remain extremely early-stage and experimental, but Head of Emerging Payments at MasterCard Asia Pacific Raj Dhamodharan remains optimistic about the future of the blockchain startups, as well as the others in the acceleration program.
“I have been very impressed by the overall quality of the ideas coming out of the Asia Pacific region and am really looking forward to working with these 10 startups to see how they develop over the coming months,” Dhamodharan said. “Staying at the forefront of developments in tech will be crucial for financial services over the coming decade. Startupbootcamp is a great way to ensure that innovation is tackling real concerns.”
Image via Startupbootcamp FinTech