Global financial giant, Citibank, has launched a corporate accelerator programme ‘Citi Mobile Challenge’ for the Asia-Pacific region to engage actively with startups from countries like India.

Citibank announced that it is creating a platform for innovation, which is part of Citi’s drive to foster digital and mobile innovation in banking, payments and ecommerce ecosystem in collaboration with leading companies as sponsors.

For this, Citibank is partnering with a number of Indian and multinational corporate like IBM, Google, Amazon Microsoft Ventures, PwC, Wipro and Nasscom’s 10,000 startups to help handpick startups in ecommerce and payments domain.

The Citi Mobile Challenge will run for eight to ten weeks that will combine a virtual hackathon. This will have developers from all across the region to participate in the programme.

Citibank has allowed participants from genres like startups, developers, tech companies and students, to create solutions across the ecosystem which is supportive to the government’s focus on several key programmes aimed to digitise the economy.

Citibank India’s head of consumer banking Kartik Kaushik said that the bank is already engaged with a number of startups in India. He added, “Indian banking is at the forefront of leading this digital wave across payments and ecommerce transactions. The Citi Mobile Challenge is aimed at harnessing the talent and agility of the developer and startup community in India to create affordable, accessible and transparent solutions for consumers. This is the first time we’re opening up APIs.”

Prior to this,, HDFC had tried to cash on the digital boom with its PayZapp app that combines deals and offers from online retailers with its payment solution.

Also, HDFC picked up minority stake in auto portal Cardekho. Besides, SBI partnered with Amazon to facilitate frictionless payments and commerce solutions for customers and small businesses. SBI has also launched its mobile wallet app SBI Buddy to compete directly with ICICI Bank’s Pocket, HDFC Bank’s PayZapp.


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