Visa, the renowned global payments company, is taking significant steps to drive the adoption of digital payments across Africa. As part of its recent $1 billion commitment to the continent, Visa is launching the Visa Africa Fintech Accelerator program. This initiative aims to support African startups and fuel their growth in the fintech space.

The Visa Africa Fintech Accelerator program will offer a unique opportunity for up to 40 startups annually. These selected startups will undergo an intensive three-month learning program focused on business growth and mentorship. The program will equip participants with valuable insights and skills to enhance their entrepreneurial journey.

Upon completing the program, Visa intends to make capital investments in select participating businesses. Moreover, these startups will benefit from accelerated commercial launch opportunities through access to Visa's cutting-edge technology and capabilities. This support will provide a significant boost to the growth and success of the startups, enabling them to reach a broader customer base and expand their operations.

The program is open to startups from across Africa, and applications will be accepted through two phases each year. The first phase is set to begin in July 2023, providing entrepreneurs with an excellent opportunity to showcase their innovative fintech solutions and secure valuable support from Visa.

In December, Visa made a bold commitment to invest $1 billion in Africa over the next five years. This investment signifies Visa's dedication to scaling its operations in the region and fostering collaboration with key strategic partners, including governments, financial institutions, mobile network operators, fintechs, and merchants. By leveraging these partnerships and capitalizing on Africa's vibrant fintech ecosystem, Visa aims to drive digital transformation and financial inclusion across the continent.

Alfred Kelly, the Executive Chairman of Visa, recognizes Africa's remarkable fintech ecosystem and its immense potential. He acknowledges the outstanding entrepreneurial talent within the region, combined with a digitally native and rapidly expanding population. The Visa Africa Fintech Accelerator program aligns with Visa's commitment to empowering these entrepreneurs, fostering innovation, and delivering solutions that meet the evolving needs of Africa's digital-first society.

As Visa continues to invest in Africa and deepen its collaborations, the fintech accelerator program stands as a testament to their dedication to catalyzing the growth of the African startup ecosystem. By nurturing these fintech innovators, Visa is contributing to the creation of a vibrant and inclusive digital payments landscape that will positively impact millions of people across the continent.