Mastercard launches program for minority fintechs
Wednesday (June 9), MasterCard announced the launch of a new Start the trail of the path, a program designed to support âtraditionally underrepresented FinTech foundersâ. The company said the program was part of its $ 500 million pledge of products, services, technology and financial support to help minority-owned businesses grow and close the racial wealth gap.
Start Path is not a new program, but it has traditionally focused on growing and expanding startups in general. This new path will support start-ups led by Blacks, Indigenous people, people of color and women entrepreneurs.
Mastercard will provide these companies with stage-based support, including partnership readiness training, coaching, and organized business and investor presentations. Additionally, the company will consider grants or investments in these startups on a case-by-case basis.
âTo achieve inclusive growth, which ensures that the benefits of a growing economy extend to all segments of society, people need access to the vital networks that power the modern economy. But access to these physical, virtual and social networks is not equally available, âsaid Michel froman, vice president and president of strategic growth, Mastercard.
Mastercard noted that venture capitalists invest a “remarkably small” amount of funding – less than 3% – in startups founded by blacks. At the same time, the company’s research shows that people want to support minority-owned businesses. A survey conducted by Mastercard last year found that three-quarters of the company’s 2,017 people plan to shop more consciously at smaller minority-owned stores.
The first participant in the program is SpenDebt, which automates consumer debt repayment. The lineup was guided by under-represented founders including Goalsetter, Start Path alumni and Mobility Capital Finance.
Earlier this year, Mastercard launched its Strivers Initiative consumer-oriented platform, designed to increase the visibility of businesses owned by black women.