WANNA CHANGE THE FUTURE OF PAYMENTS?

Eager to challenge the status quo and introduce next generation fintech solutions to power the digital economy? You’ve come to the right place.

Visa and Eleven are teaming up to nourish the development and unlock the potential of fintech startup talent in transforming the way how we pay and get paid.

Stepping into a cab, grabbing a coffee or ordering a sofa online – payments are everywhere. Tap, pass or blink… What is the next big thing?

ENTER A WORLD OF OPPORTUNITIES

We believe that the broader and more accessible digital payments infrastructure contributes to a more secure and inclusive world where consumers, businesses and economies may thrive.

We invite all visionary fintechs to apply and join the pilot-centered and carefully-crafted Visa Innovation Program, powered by Eleven, addressing some of the hottest opportunities in the payment industry.

SPEED UP INNOVATION DEVELOPMENT AND ADOPTION

With Visa being the inspiration behind future payments and Eleven powering the entrepreneurial engine, Visa Innovation Program is the well-balanced mixture of tech infrastructure, exceptional fintech know-how, design expertise and talent that come together to bring cutting edge fintech solutions faster and at a scale.

Come and join us to be one of 11 and achieve greater speed to market via Visa’s vast network of clients and partners.

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AREAS

TO REINVENT

Our focus areas are vivid real-life challenges for end consumers, small enterprises and financial institutions; fueled by the vast adoption of digital technologies and opportunities brought by new regulations.

Build Future of Retail

Accelerate Banking Transformation

Power Cross-Border Economy

General Application

We welcome all ingenious solutions to change the future of payments. Feel free to innovate!

Build Future of Retail

Accelerate Banking Transformation

Power Cross-Border Economy

General Application

We welcome all ingenious solutions to change the future of payments. Feel free to innovate!

WHAT’S THE DEAL?

The fintechs with the best developments within the program may have the opportunity to launch a pilot with a bank and have extended access to Visa’s partner network.

BESPOKE * NO COST * EQUITY FREE

Up to three-month equity-free innovation program nourishing your company’s development and tailoring your products through design thinking principles and access to cutting-edge technologies including novelty tools from Visa Developer Platform, cloud services and latest financial and consumer insights.

PILOT-CENTERED

We know how hard it is for the fintechs to be recognized and become integrated within an enterprise – that’s why our Program is set to be a door-opener and sales cycle shortener for you through the bumpy road towards corporate pilots. Our team and digital champions will be with you during ups and downs and guide you to approach the POC phase faster.

CAREFULLY CRAFTED ENGAGEMENT

You will be working side-by-side with international fintech domain experts and successful entrepreneurs, so you can elevate your products and solutions to transform the payment industry landscape. Your arrangements will be hand-picked and done case by case – one size fits all simply does not work both for you and for us.

THE TIMELINE

  • PRE Program Phase

    Application Submission: May 7 - June 7

  • CORE Program

    Design Sprints I Mentorship Sessions I Workshops I Brain Jams I June 20 - September 1 | Demo Day 30 September

  • POST Program Engagement

    Potential pilot and engagement in community activities, bringing many business opportunities and fellow entrepreneurs for mutual support.

The timelines above are indicative and we reserve the right to amend or modify the Program calendar if the circumstances require such changes.

Program Terms apply, see here.

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CORE

BENEFITS

Our program is a door-opener which provides faster market access, shortened sales enterprise cycle and a ton of industry knowledge.

During the program development cycle, you will be engineering innovative solutions by having access to:

Diverse entrepreneurial network with global fintech industry luminaries and investors

Collaborative innovation ecosystem with domain experts and practitioners

Think tank, essential tools and industry data

Latest APIs from Visa Developers Platform to supercharge your product

Masterclasses, workshops and peer to peer gatherings for practical knowledge exchange

Upon the completion of the program, selected fintechs will enjoy extensive benefits to bring innovation to scale via corporate engagements:

Tailored support to make you PoC-ready

Get fast-track PoC and partnership opportunities with banks and other players via Visa’s network

Shorten your products’ sales enterprise cycle

Access handpicked international events and conferences

Prioritized access opportunity to Visa’s Venture Program and Eleven Founders Fund

WHO CAN

APPLY

If your team already has proof of concept targeted at the fintech industry or completed a market-ready solution, you are the right fit for Visa Innovation Program.

FINTECHS IN

COHORT S1

These are the six companies part of the first Visa Innovation Program season.

01.

STAGE

Startups and scale ups having a market-tested solution

02.

TEAM

An experienced team with an entrepreneurial spirit

03.

SOLUTION

A product addressing one of our ‘areas to reinvent’

04.

COMMITMENT

Dedicated, passionate founders committed to create solutions that lead to PoCs with banks and enterprises

MENTORS

Our mentors come from various industries of the business and financial world. They are doers, not talkers, leaders not followers. The collective intelligence which they bring to the table will serve as a rocket fuel to your fintech spaceship.

CORE NETWORK

  • Daniel Tomov
    Daniel Tomov Managing Partner, Eleven
  • Vassil Terziev
    Vassil Terziev Managing Partner, Eleven
  • Ivaylo Simov
    Ivaylo Simov Managing Partner, Eleven
  • Rene Tomova
    Rene Tomova Co-Founder, Creative Shower
  • Nikola Yanev
    Nikola Yanev Marketing Manager, Eleven
  • Boyko Iaramov
    Boyko Iaramov Co-Founder, Telerik Academy, Campus X
  • Svetozar Georgiev
    Svetozar Georgiev Co-Founder, Telerik Academy, Campus X
  • Zoran Arsovski
    Zoran Arsovski Digital Consultant, Verto Digital
  • Mladen Tomov
    Mladen Tomov Founder, Co-Transition
  • Jordan Petrov
    Jordan Petrov Managing Partner, Kickflip
  • Christian Tanev
    Christian Tanev Co-founder and Managing Partner, Develor Bulgaria
  • Svetla Simidchieva
    Svetla Simidchieva CEO, Placement Feed

AUGMENTED

  • Miroslava Georgieva
    Miroslava Georgieva Commercial Director, Gfk
  • Radostin Deyanov
    Radostin Deyanov Attorney-at-Law, PwC
  • Georg Shikov
    Georg Shikov Attorney-at-Law, PwC
  • Zornica Yanakieva
    Zornica Yanakieva COO, CashCredit
  • George Sharkov
    George Sharkov Adviser to the Minister of Defense, National Cybersecurity Coordinator
  • Deyan Vassilev
    Deyan Vassilev Founder and CEO, Moitepari and CreditLand
  • Maria Gergova-Bengsston
    Maria Gergova-Bengsston ЕО SEE Chapter President, Entrepreneurs'​ Organization
  • Radina Nedyalkova
    Radina Nedyalkova Founder, Vox Advisory
  • Polina Toskova
    Polina Toskova Country manager, MyPOS

EXTENDED

  • Kevin Lee
    Kevin Lee Executive Director & VP, Head of Design EMEA, Visa
  • Ozan Ozturk
    Ozan Ozturk Head of Strategy & Market Planning, South East Europe, Visa
  • Katerina Lamprou
    Katerina Lamprou Product and Market Development Senior Manager South East Europe, Visa
  • Sevdalina Vassileva
    Sevdalina Vassileva Executive Director, Chief Retail Banking Officer, FiBank
  • Guergana Stoichkova
    Guergana Stoichkova Director, Bulgarian Fintech Assosiation
  • Martin Zaimov
    Martin Zaimov Co-Creator, Sophia Lab
  • George Shulev
    George Shulev Co-Founder, Nexo

PARTNERS

Collaboration between

The Core Program will be designed and co-executed with the leaders of the Eleven Design Lab – Creative Shower.

We partner with frontier organizations leading disruption in their fields. Their involvement will accelerate your growth, providing you with untapped resources – exclusive data, innovative services and a market “playground”. And “Yes”, you’ll have access to all of them.

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Resources
Our resource partners will help you to speed up your growth.

FAQ

Do you engage with teams and projects from Bulgaria only?

No. In fact, we see true fintech innovation potential throughout the whole SEE region. Feel free to apply even if you are a company based outside of Bulgaria.
Just have in mind that the program’s activities take place in Sofia, Bulgaria, so for the time being, you may need to relocate with your team.

Do you offer a coworking space?

Since the program is non-residential and does not require your team’s presence daily, we do not offer free coworking space.
Nevertheless, as our partners, Campus X can offer discounted prices for their coworking services, either for your entire team or for individual team members.

Do you offer accommodation for teams travelling from different countries or cities?

No. We can’t offer any accommodation options for the participants.
Still, we may recommend some trusted service providers for finding long-term of short-term accommodation.

Do you provide funding for my company?

No. We do not provide any funding to the startups within the program.

Do you take equity from my company?

No. We take no equity in the participating startups.

If I am a solo-founder do I need a team in order to join the program?

We do strongly believe that a capable team is what makes or breaks a successful startup company. Thus, we are looking for teams with diverse skillset, market expertise and entrepreneurial spirit.

Is there a fee for participating in the program?

The program is completely free of charge for the participating companies and there is NO fee or equity stakeholding associated with taking part in the activities.

What are the main phases of the Program?

Pre-program phase

The Selection Jury comprising from experts from Visa and Eleven will review your application to get acquainted with your product / solution and team,, and will evaluate potential matches with Visa/Visa Clients. It will also do an active scouting to find prospective candidates. In case initial fit is identified, you will be invited to an interview by Eleven’s team – the main objective is to validate your interest in participating in the Program and examine the mutual interest for further collaboration throughout the Program Core Phase.

Core program phase

During the main course of the Program, you will enter a carefully crafted bunch of workshops, mentoring sessions and design sprints, anchoring Visa’s design thinking methodology and will work to elevate your business model to better fit the defined market challenges. The Program’s objective is to have you at a perfect shape and ready to examine future pilot opportunities with Visa/ Visa Clients with your product/solution being integrated into their offering.

Post-program engagement

After the end of the program, you might be selected by Visa/Visa Client to launch a pilot. No matter the outcome, you will become part of our #OneOf11 family where we will further engage your team in community activities, bringing many business opportunities and fellow entrepreneurs for mutual support.

What do you provide to the participating companies?
  • Diverse entrepreneurial network with global fintech industry luminaries and investors
  • Collaborative innovation ecosystem with domain experts and practitioners
  • Think tank, essential tools and industry data
  • Latest APIs from Visa Developers Platform to supercharge your product
  • Masterclasses, workshops and peer to peer gatherings for practical knowledge exchange
What is the duration of the program?

The program development cycle has a duration of up to three months, depending on the development stage of your company’s products and solutions.

Where I can find the Program terms and Conditions?

They are available here

Where is the Visa Innovation Program taking place?

The activities associated with the Visa Innovation Program take place on the premises of Campus X in Sofia, Bulgaria.

Who can participate?

 

  1. Startups and scale ups having a market-tested solution
  2. An experienced team with an entrepreneurial spirit
  3. A solution addressing one of our ‘areas to reinvent
  4. Committed and dedicated founders, ready to lead future pilot-centred project
Who runs/initiated the Visa Innovation Program?

The Visa Innovation Program is a collaborative initiative between Visa and Eleven Ventures.The Program is inspired and backed with knowledge and expertise by Visa and it is run by Eleven and within its community.

Will I get funded after the end of the program?

After the end of the Visa Innovation Program, according to their performance and results, some companies may receive a venture capital funding offer from Eleven

Would you support a project that only targets the local market, but is very good and can be very profitable?

As a general rule, we believe the most successful startups will be easily scalable and can target global markets. In the beginning, you may be piloting with national clients, but we are looking for global growth ambition.

start your application today

This website and the innovation program is operated by Eleven. Your relationship is with Eleven and applications are made to them. You should only submit publicly available information as the information you submit during your application will not be treated as confidential information. If you are selected, your involvement in the program is conditional on you signing the Innovation Program Terms and Conditions, which form a binding contract between you and Eleven. Visa sponsors the program and may be involved in selection of participants, but Visa accepts no responsibility for the operation of the website or Innovation Program. For the avoidance of doubt, Eleven is not acting as an agent of Visa and has no authority to make commitments on behalf of Visa.

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