Of the fintech startups who applied to participate in the program, BBVA selected the 13 that it believes have the most potential for growth. Some of the missions represented by these entrepreneurs’ initiatives include bringing technology to the stock market, democratizing renewable energy investment, creating a mobile payment network, helping finance young people's first home purchase in urban areas, and personalizing customer support and loyalty programs.
As explained by Ainhoa Campo, BBVA's Global Head of Open Innovation, the bank’s desire to connect and collaborate with startups is rooted in three main objectives:
- To make a mark on the bank's business: “We try to focus everything we do towards what the bank might very broadly be looking for. It's not just about responding to concrete needs; it's about looking for inspiration, which helps give the bank a broader perspective, a more ‘open mind’”, Campo points out.
- To support the local ecosystems in the communities BBVA serves. “It is essential to support entrepreneurial activity across our footprint if we're going to keep pace with the fourth industrial revolution and be sustainable going forward,” explains the Head of BBVA Open Innovation.
- To be involved in the most innovative fintech ecosystems, those which are considered to be on the cutting-edge.
With this program, BBVA concentrates specifically on supporting local ecosystems.
The program gets underway
The course begins with each startup, depending on its needs, deciding what type of expert will be most useful as they balance their work across three main areas: the technology and the product, the market, and the business. In parallel, they will also be working on their funding and investment strategies.
The program — with face-to-face sessions, monitoring, and mentoring activities coordinated by Adventurees — uses the unique Goldsmith method as the basis of its work structure. This approach will enable participants to confidently evaluate the key elements of their projects. This is according to Adventurees CEO, Yael H. Oaknín, who addressed the startups, “Our role during the time that we will be working together is, to every extent possible, to help your projects make the best progress possible, as quickly as possible. For us, the success of the program depends on the success of your businesses. So, your success is our success.”
Ainhoa Campo, responsable global de Open Innovation de BBVA, durante su intervención en el Open Space.
Over the course of the nine-month program, nine workshops (three focusing on the concept phase, three on the development phase, and three on the commercial phase) will be delivered to the participants. They will be able to participate either in person at the Open Space center in Madrid or on the online platform designed by Adventurees. Other industry experts and companies will be invited to the sessions so that participants can benefit from their experience.
In addition to the workshops, the startups will benefit from mentoring sessions, and finally, the best projects will be presented at the fourth Texas-Spain Investment Forum, an event where they will be able to foster synergies and meet investors from both the U.S. and Spain.