The University of Strathclyde’s first-ever fintech entrepreneurship programme is helping to enable innovative ideas and develop early-stage businesses.
A low-cost alternative to traditional overdrafts and an app that links consumers with service providers are just some of the ideas in development.
The Strathclyde Entrepreneurial Network (SEN) accelerator programme encourages the development of early-stage, innovation-driven fintech startups. The programme is run in collaboration with Strathclyde Business School.
Four groups of up-and-coming entrepreneurs are given access to money and support to help them build ideas and plan for investment and capital growth as part of the six-month programme.
Participants are offered monthly masterclasses, as well as a dedicated mentor to guide progress, with the programme finale giving entrepreneurs an opportunity to pitch to investors in a ‘Dragons Den’ style event.
As part of the programme, entrepreneurs can also apply for up to £1,000 of initial funding from the Strathclyders into Business Fund and access professional business environments with dedicated working space at the Enterprise Hub.
Professor Eleanor Shaw, Senior Vice-Dean of the Strathclyde Business School, commented: “We are delighted to welcome the first aspiring entrepreneurs onto the University’s FinTech Accelerator and look forward to providing them with all the help and support they need to help realise their potential.
“The accelerator is an important part of the University’s FinTech Cluster and participants will be able to take advantage of a broad range of support from the emergent strong Glasgow fintech ecosystem, particularly from our partners within the Glasgow City Innovation District.”
BankPal, developed by MSc FinTech student, Daniel Sloan, aims to provide easy, low-cost alternative lending solutions to traditional overdrafts while boosting consumers’ financial literacy.
MSc FinTech student Darren Nicol has also developed an online platform Nudge Blockchain, which helps facilitate the transactions and management of work contracts, while SimpliTasker, designed by Strathclyde MBA graduates Sarthak Kukreja and Othmane Ammor, aims to help consumers and businesses book on-demand services and get matched with services providers in seconds.
Kukreja commented: “The accelerator is helping guide us through the complexity of the financial services industry and making us visible to the people who matter in the banking sector.
“The mentoring from leading FinTech and business experts will also help us gain valuable insights to allow us to take our business to the next level.”