Yalla Fintech 2020 hackathon opens to applicants to boost financial inclusion

Competition will bring together innovators and regulators to develop tech-based solutions to address pressing challenges

Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. December 22, 2013 -
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UAE-based FinTech Galaxy is accepting applications for its virtual hackathon that will focus on developing tools that can expand financial inclusion for businesses and individuals in the Arab world.

The Yalla FinTech hackathon is a partnership between FinTech Galaxy and German development agency Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit to boost financial inclusion. Start-ups and tech firms can now submit their proposals to address technical challenges in digital lending, financial awareness and cybersecurity.

“We are home-grown with a track record and a global FinTech network that enables us to bring together start-ups, progressive banks and ecosystem partners from the Arab markets. In doing so, we harness a common goal, embracing FinTech innovations for better livelihoods,” Mirna Sleiman, founder and chief executive of FinTech Galaxy, said of the hackathon’s launch.

In the Middle East and North Africa, two out of three people do not have a bank account, according to the World Bank.

Financial inclusion is critical for the region’s competitiveness, for employment creation and for raising incomes and reducing poverty, according to the lender.

Businesses need access to financial services in order to invest, innovate and manage cash flow and costs, while households benefit from financial inclusion as a safe place to save and access loans, according to the World Bank.

The latest wave of technology such as artificial intelligence, big data, cloud services and distributed ledgers is affecting financial services at an unprecedented pace. The digital transformation in finance can stimulate competition and product variety for the benefit of communities and businesses in the region, according to FinTech Galaxy, which facilitates the development of applications, products, and services on its online platform, FinX22.

The digital platform enables the screening, interaction and collaboration among innovators, financial institutions, and regulators, allowing them to crowdsource and prototype FinTech solutions prospectively in Fintech Galaxy’s API Sandbox while being physically distant.

Following the application deadline on November 19, proposals meeting the requirements will be shortlisted and innovators invited to pitch their solutions to a panel of experts. Winning proposals in each category will be awarded a prize of €5,000.