Visa has announced the startups shortlisted from across Africa to participate in the second cohort of its Africa Fintech Accelerator program.

As part of Visa’s work to unlock financial innovation across the continent, the biannual program offers 12 weeks of 1:1 mentorship and personalized training, providing seed to series A startups with exclusive opportunities to access funding, development, and resources.

Cohort 2 startups operate across 28 African countries, a 55% increase from Cohort 1 where the representatives operated across 18 countries. 65% of them feature female leadership, rising from 43% in the inaugural edition.

The selected startups offer a range of solutions, such as neo-banking, merchant payments, credit scoring, risk and identity management, embedded finance, social commerce, escrow services, and more. They aim to address the challenges and opportunities in the African fintech landscape, such as financial inclusion, access to credit, cross-border payments, and digital transformation.

Aida Diarra, vice-president, and head of sub-Saharan Africa at Visa, remarks: “At Visa, we believe in uplifting innovation while driving access and inclusion across the financial ecosystem. Today, we are proud to say that our second cohort of Accelerator participants represents more than 50% of countries across Africa, up from a third during our first cohort. Not only that, but women are in leadership roles across the majority of these cutting-edge startups. We have a robust, diverse selection of innovators seeking to shape the future of commerce and finance – and Visa is happy to help them take the next step to where they need to be.”

The 12-week virtual Accelerator program will conclude with an in-person Demo Day, where startups will have the opportunity to pitch their innovations to key ecosystem players, funding partners, angel investors, and venture capitalists, enabling them to take small steps towards unlocking their full potential.

The sub-Saharan Africa startups shortlisted for the second cohort of the Visa Fintech Accelerator program for Africa are:

* Chapa – Ethiopia – Merchant Solutions

* CheckUps Medical Hub – Kenya – Embedded Finance (Health)

* AzamPay – Tanzania – B2B Marketplace

* Beem – Tanzania – Social Commerce

* Bizao – Ivory Coast – Merchant Payments Solution

* Hub2 – Ivory Coast – Enabler Infrastructure

* Iwomi Technologies – Cameroon – Money Movement

* Proboutik – Cameroon – Merchant Payments Solution

* Vaultpay – Democratic Republic of Congo – Merchant Payments Solution

* Aku – Nigeria – Neo-banking

* Cleva – Nigeria – Money Movement

* Curacel – Nigeria – Insurance Management

* E-doc Online – Nigeria – Open Banking

* Raenest – Nigeria – Money Movement

* Bridgecard – Nigeria – Enabler Infrastructure

* Truzo – South Africa – Escrow Services