Washington, D.C. (March 29, 2019)—The Independent Community Bankers of America® (ICBA) and The Venture Center concluded the 2019 ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator this week by hosting the program’s inaugural Demo Day in Little Rock, Ark. on Wednesday. At the event, participating fintech finalists presented their solutions to attending investors, community bankers and other financial industry leaders. Several participating companies also announced collaborations with ICBA community bank members and ICBA Bancard, the payments-services subsidiary of ICBA.
“We are ushering in the next great wave of community banking—one that is all about creating high-tech, high-touch banking experiences for our customers,” ICBA President and CEO Rebeca Romero Rainey said. “That’s why ICBA’s partnership with The Venture Center, and the incredible fintech finalists we have, are so important and vital to our mission of creating and promoting an environment where community banks flourish.”
“This has been an incredible project with the eight entrepreneurs participating in the ICBA ThinkTECH program and we’re grateful to the ICBA for partnering with The Venture Center to make this program possible,” said Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson.
Demo Day marks the culmination of the rigorous 12-week program designed to accelerate the development of early-stage, community bank-focused fintech products. Each company received in-depth mentoring and training from ICBA and The Venture Center as well as an initial monetary investment. The fintech finalists also interacted with executives from more than 28 community banks during the program.
“The partnership with ICBA has proved to be a tremendous success for community banks and financial technology companies,” said Wayne Miller, executive director of The Venture Center. “We could not be more grateful to the state of Arkansas, the Arkansas Economic Development Commission and the ICBA team in helping our entrepreneurs shape, mold and sculpt these solutions to make them relevant.”
“What’s been incredible about this program is that not only have community banks been learning more about fintech opportunities, but ICBA staff, community bankers and other industry leaders have taught fintechs about community banking and how they can best serve our industry,” ICBA Services Network Chief Operating Officer Kevin Tweddle said. “This is how we at ICBA feel we can make the most direct impact in finding more tailored solutions for community banks.”
ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator finalists include:
- Adlumin, Alexandria, Va. – offers a cloud-based security incident and event management solution, custom-built for the financial sector.
- Agora, New York, N.Y. – helps banks enhance their legacy payment platforms (without replacing them) for a better user experience.
- Botdoc, Monument, Colo. – provides the ability to remotely collect documents in real time.
- CRiskCo, Brisbane, Australia – introduces automated artificial intelligence (AI) onboarding and underwriting technologies to banks.
- KapitalWise, New York, N.Y. – presents an AI platform that allows financial institutions to interact with their customers.
- MK Decision, San Diego, Calif. – delivers a better lending experience, optimized to drive conversions, with automated credit decisions and data-driven fraud prevention.
- Invest Sou Sou, Washington, D.C. – supplies a smart, social banking account to attract low-cost deposits and credit-ready borrowers.
- Teslar by 3E, Fayetteville, Ark. – makes information more accessible for banks by integrating multiple systems and streamlining processes in a scalable fashion.
The 2019 program received 191 applications from fintech startups across 32 countries. For more information about the ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator program, visit www.icba.org/thinktech.
The Independent Community Bankers of America® creates and promotes an environment where community banks flourish. With more than 52,000 locations nationwide, community banks constitute 99 percent of all banks, employ more than 760,000 Americans and are the only physical banking presence in one in five U.S. counties. Holding more than $4.9 trillion in assets, $3.9 trillion in deposits, and $3.4 trillion in loans to consumers, small businesses and the agricultural community, community banks channel local deposits into the Main Streets and neighborhoods they serve, spurring job creation, fostering innovation and fueling their customers’ dreams in communities throughout America. For more information, visit ICBA’s website at www.icba.org.
About The Venture Center
The Venture Center helps entrepreneurs turn their startups into viable, high-growth businesses. By leveraging the expertise of a world-class team of mentors, intensive programming and introductions to the investor community, The Venture Center serves as an engine for economic growth in Central Arkansas and beyond. In the first four years, The Venture Center’s member companies have created more than 637 jobs, generated $28 million in revenue and have raised a combined $57 million in capital. For more information, visit http://www.venturecenter.co.