Citibank is launching a start-up accelerator programme in the Asia-Pacific region, as part of its efforts to foster digital and mobile innovation in banking.
Dubbed Citi Mobile Challenge, the programme combines a virtual hackathon with an incubator, a network of financial technology experts and Citi’s global sponsors and clients, with the aim of creating financial apps for over 100 markets.
Developers in the programme can get access to APIs (application programming interfaces) from the bank and other financial and tech firms to create apps that work with existing Citi technology.
Finalists can take their technologies into production with Citi’s support, and stand a chance to win a share of US$100,000 in cash, plus services from the programme’s sponsors. They will also receive mentoring, office space and investment.
Registration for the Citi Mobile Challenge starts on August 19, and selected participants will demonstrate their concepts at events in Bangalore, Hong Kong, Singapore and Sydney. A panel of industry experts and financial technology leaders will evaluate the apps at each event.
The Asia-Pacific Citi Mobile Challenge follows similar launches in Europe, Middle East and Africa earlier this year, and in Latin America and the US in 2014.
Across the three programmes, Citi had received nearly 2,000 submissions from over 100 countries and hosted events in Buenos Aires, Bogota, Silicon Valley, New York, Miami, Nairobi, Jerusalem, Warsaw and London.
The bank said it is currently working with several winners from previous challenges to pilot apps for consumers and business clients.