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11 Startups in MENA Selected for the Financial Solutions for Migrants Accelerator Program

Cairo, Egypt — 11 startups operating in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region have been selected to join Village Capital’s Financial Solutions for Migrants program, an accelerator for impact-driven startups developing financial inclusion solutions for migrants.

The program which is funded by the Impact-Linked Fund for Gender Inclusive Fintech (ILF for GIF), managed by the Impact-Linked Finance Fund  and supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, and the Austrian Development Agency, the operational unit of Austrian Development Cooperation, will work with the startups to further develop and refine their products and solutions to fit the needs of different migrant communities including migrant women and refugees. 

The program will provide a combination of intensive in-person and virtual investment readiness training, and connect the 11 startups to 21 other companies from sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia who will also be taking part in the accelerator, and Village Capital’s wider investor and mentor community.

These startups were selected from an applicant pool of 51, and consist of startups from Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, the United Arab Emirates, and Qatar. 54% of the cohort have one or more female founders.

Meet the 11 startups developing financial inclusion solutions for migrants within and beyond MENA.

  • Aseel (US) is a platform delivering humanitarian aid with low overhead, providing market access for handmade artisans, and offering financial access.
  • Balad (Egypt) is a NeoBank for migrants and their families.
  • Cwallet Services (Qatar) is an award winning startup offering a digital platform to low-income and unbanked migrant workers, domestic helpers, and blue collar workers to receive salaries, send money home, pay bills, buy groceries from their local store, access metro tickets, purchase bus tickets, and transfer money to family and friends.
  • Credify (Egypt) is an Open API and SDK allowing lending and BNPL partners to enrich and automate their credit scoring using alternative data sources and their customers’ digital footprint.
  • Dinarak (Jordan) is a mobile payment service provider licensed by the Central Bank of Jordan and serving more than 400,000 customers and 2,000 businesses.
  • Empowch (US/Lebanon) is a mobile payments and financial services platform empowering the unbanked by providing low-cost remittance and secure digital wallets.
  • Monak E-Services (UAE) is a MENA-based migrant fintech company that provides financial inclusion and life services to migrants and underserved communities via partnered networks. 
  • Purpl (Lebanon) is the first remittance and cash-out aggregator for the Levant region allowing for ATM network integration and cardless withdrawal, combined with a digital wallet in Lebanon. Our mission is to enable financial inclusion by making banking infrastructure available to the unbanked.
  • SAV Technologies (UAE) is a one-stop money management platform for migrant populations in the Middle East, focused on savings.
  • Uqudo (UAE) is a digital onboarding, e-know-your-customer (e-KYC), anti-money laundering (AML), and know-your business (KYB) solutions provider with the widest verification capabilities in the region.
  • XPay (Egypt) is a real time payments and lifestyle bank for youth and families.

About Village Capital:

Village Capital is reinventing the system to back the entrepreneurs of the future. Known for its groundbreaking approaches to supporting founders who are building solutions to emergent social, economic, and environmental challenges, VilCap unlocks critical social and financial capital for early-stage companies to maximize business and impact growth.

Village Capital has operated in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) since 2018 by running over 6 accelerator programs. Vilcap has supported more than 70 locally-based startups working in sectors such as data tech, financial health, green tech, and health equity.

About the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC):

The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) is the agency for international cooperation of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA). The SDC is responsible for the overall coordination with other federal authorities of development cooperation and cooperation with Eastern Europe as well as for humanitarian aid delivered by the Swiss Confederation.

About the Impact-Linked Finance Fund (ILFF):

The Impact-Linked Finance Fund (ILFF) provides finance to high-impact enterprises and directly rewards these for positive outcomes generated through their business activities. It was established by Roots of Impact and iGravity in order to pool their know-how and activities for implementing scalable Impact-Linked Funds.

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