Caixa, Global Payments and Ingenico to create fintech innovation venture
CaixaBank, Global Payments and terminal maker Ingenico are investing 5 million euros to establish an international innovation program designed to identify and aid promising fintech startups.
The Zone2boost project will operate as a new company owned by the partners, with Caixa Bank and Global Payments each owning 40% and Ingenico owning 20%. It will collaborate with Barcelona business school IESE as its operating center.
"CaixaBank currently benefits from the collaboration of startups in the development of its innovation, but we believe that the time has come to go one step further and become truly involved in the process of developing new business projects for the sector," Juan Antonio Alcaraz, chief business officer at CaixaBank, said in a Friday press release. "We will provide these recently established companies with the optimal environment to test their idea's potential for success."
The initiative will be launched in the last quarter of 2019 with the initial investment to cover the next three years.
The collaborators said startups selected for the program will obtain funding and access to a physical space to develop their projects, and a team of expert mentors will provide training and advice. Once the Zone2boost space is fully operational, it is expected to be able to accommodate approximately 30 companies.
Additionally, DayOne, CaixaBank's division providing specialized services to startups, will offer financing programs to participants.
With the support package spanning anywhere from six months to two years, Caixa Bank, Global Payments and Ingenico say they will have "first dibs" at incorporating successful outcomes into their commercial programs.
The venture falls in line with the spirit of PSD2 in Europe and its core emphasis on spurring innovation and bringing more ideas and products of third-party fintechs into the financial and payments landscape.
In that regard, Zone2boost does not represent the first time Caixa Bank and Global Payments have teamed up to accelerate innovation. In March of 2017, the bank and payment processor joined with Samsung, Visa and BNP Paribas-owned Arval to invest in a Barcelona-based Payment Innovation Hub focusing on e-commerce and internet-of-things advancements.
For its part, Ingenico has continued expanding into other payment technology, especially global e-commerce, and fraud protection tools since Nicolas Huss took over as CEO at the French company. Huss took the role in late in 2018 after Philippe Lazare, who spent 11 years as the company's chief executive.