Fintech companies from all over the world are invited to compete for a combined $125,000 in total prize money and a spotlight on the world stage
Tbilisi – February 10, 2021 – Visa announced the 2021 edition of the Everywhere Initiative – a global innovation program and competition for fintechs. This year, the focus is on expansion and accessibility, with Visa offering a one-stop experience to register and learn about upcoming opportunities and competitions – via the global website.
Fintechs started by everyone, everywhere will pitch their ideas in regional competitions to a panel of expert judges from across the payments industry. All applicants from Georgia are invited to compete first on a CEMEA stage to win a combined $25,000 in total prize and then on a global stage for a combined $100,000 in total prize money and to tell their companies’ stories.
“Supporting companies across the globe who are building solutions that power seamless money movement everywhere is a top priority for Visa. We recognize fintechs as a force for innovation that is core to our business and encourage everyone to apply to Visa Everywhere Initiative. I am looking forward to seeing the many brilliant ideas from Georgia and across CISSEE this year,” noted Vira Platonova, Senior Vice President and Group Country Manager for Visa CISSEE.
Participants are invited submit applications in English to the CEMEA regional pitch before May 7, with the regional CEMEA finals scheduled for June 8 and global finals – for September 14, 2021.
Visa and TechCrunch will promote and host live-streamed and virtual events in North America, CEMEA and Latin America.
Participants can register and submit applications following the link: https://visaeverywhere.typeform.com/to/VxWIYB
About Visa Everywhere Initiative
The Visa Everywhere Initiative is a global, open innovation program that tasks start-ups and fintechs to solve payment and commerce challenges of tomorrow, further enhance their own product propositions and provide visionary solutions for Visa’s vast network of partners.
The program first launched in the U.S. in 2015 and quickly expanded into a global program with more than 7,000 participating startups. To date, startups have collectively raised over $2.5 billion in funding, and the program has been activated on six continents—touching more than 100 countries.
Six monetary prizes will be awarded during the global finals event:
Winner: $15,000 USD
Audience Favorite: $10,000 USD
The CEMEA winner will participate in the Global Competition
Overall Winner: $50,000 USD
Audience Favorite: $25,000 USD
2nd Place: $15,000 USD
3rd Place: $10,000 USD
Visa does not ask for any equity from Visa Everywhere Initiative competitors as part of this competition.
Who should apply for the Visa Everywhere Initiative?
Visa is looking for creative minds who are solving the payments and commerce challenges faced by businesses of all sizes and sectors, including but not limited to:
Enabler of Digital Services and Digital Issuers
- Blockchain & Cryptocurrency
- Banking as a Services
- BIN Sponsors
- Issuer / Processors
- Program Managers
- Blockchain & Cryptocurrency
- Alternative Lending
- Personal Financial Management
- Money Transfer & Remittance
- Digital Banking (aka Neo Banks)
- Digital Wallets, P2P &Transfers
- Employee Benefits
- Corporate Cards (aka expense management)
Value-Add for Merchants and/or Consumers when it comes to Finance
- Data & Analytics
- ID, Authentication & Security
- Merchant Services & Tools
- Process & Pay Infrastructure
- Retail Technology
Small/Medium -Sized Business Recovery
- Money Movement (disbursements, Intra-account, p2pvendor, payments)
- Acceptance (e-commerce, mobile acceptance)
- Risk Management (chargebacks, etc.)
- Brand Management (Community building, etc.)
For more details, please visit http://visa.com/everywhereinitiative
About Visa Inc.
Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is the world’s leader in digital payments. Our mission is to connect the world through the most innovative, reliable and secure payment network - enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive. Our advanced global processing network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second. The company’s relentless focus on innovation is a catalyst for the rapid growth of connected commerce on any device, and a driving force behind the dream of a cashless future for everyone, everywhere. As the world moves from analog to digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and scale to reshape the future of commerce. For more information, visit usa.visa.com/about-visa, visa.com.ge, facebook.com/VisaGeorgiaGE
Georgia has launched talks with the European Union for financial assistance for the next seven years. The talks organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia will continue from 9 to 11 February.
The first meeting was held on 9 February between the First Deputy Foreign Minister Vakhtang Makharoblishvili and the EU Ambassador to Georgia Carl Hartzell.
The consultations will focus on the priorities of the EU financial assistance (during the period from 2021 to 2027), which will help Georgia implement EU-funded projects and programmes in the future.
Thematic sessions will focus on the following areas: development of trade and economy (DCFTA), business promotion, agriculture, industry, services, SME support, consumer protection and women’s involvement in business, communications (transport, energy and digitalization), green economy and road safety, improvement of education quality and access to international education, digital infrastructure and digital economy, rule of law and sustainable institutions , environment and climate, public engagement and democracy.
The EU allocates considerable financial assistance in support of the reforms ongoing in Georgia.
Talks on financial assistance between Georgia and the EU will end tomorrow.
In 2014-2020 financial assistance of the EU for Georgia amounted to €750 million.
The Administration of the MFA Georgia
Within the framework of international police cooperation, members of various criminal groups - citizens of Georgia - were taken under arrest in Italy and France with the active involvement of the Central Criminal Police Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia and active participation of Georgian police attaches.
On February 9, 2021, with the direct involvement of the Police attache of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia to Italy, the officers of Central Operative Service of the Ministry of Interior of Italy, Regio Emilia Regional Police under the Public Safety Department and Interpol, as a result of intensive operative search and investigative activities, exposed and detained 21 Georgian citizens in Italy, 2 individuals in Poland, 1 individual in Greece, one in Belgium and another one in Slovenia within the frames of the operation under the name “Thief-in-law”. The mentioned persons were involved in illegal activities on the territory of Italy and EU member states.
The investigation established that the detained Georgian citizens were robbing the apartments in northern Italy, sending the stolen items to specific venues for further realization, and attempted to start a legal business on the territory of the Italian Republic with the money illegally obtained from the stolen items.
Due to the mentioned criminal actions, the Department of Public Safety of the Italian Republic has launched an investigation against the citizens of Georgia under Articles 416, 624 and 648 under the Criminal Code of Italy, envisaging the formation of criminal groups, theft and money laundering. The mentioned criminal action envisages up to 7 years of imprisonment.
Within the framework of operation “Thief- in –Law”, Georgian law enforcers, as a result of a 6-month cooperation and direct participation of the Police Attache of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia, exchanged operative information a number of times on Georgian citizens involved in the mentioned criminal activities with the Italian side.
In order to conceal the traces of crime to Italian police forces, Georgian citizens actively used forged data and documents. As a result of the complex measures and active involvement of the Forensic-Criminalistics Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia, all the individuals who participated in the mentioned crimes were identified.
Operation “Thief –in- Law” is only the part of a large-scale operation being carried out jointly by Georgian and Italian law enforcement agencies.
In addition to the mentioned, on February 9, 2021, joint operation "BRATVA-35" was carried out in the Republic of France, as a result of intensive operative-investigative activities with the direct involvement of the Georgian police attache and the Georgian Liaison Officer deployed by the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Georgia to the French National Police.
As part of the operation, in the cities of the French Republic: La Roche-sur-Yon, Noir, Angers, Bordeaux and Rennes, the "thief in law" of Georgian origin - K.A. And 17 citizens of Georgia were detained.
The detainees were members of an organized criminal group and actively involved in criminal activities in France and other EU states. In particular, they are charged under Articles 131, 132, 311, 321, 450 of the Criminal Code of the French Republic and Article 414 of the Customs Code, which includes a number of episodes of theft committed by an organized group in commercial premises on the territory of the French Republic, participation in an organized criminal group, purchase / sale of criminally obtained property and illegal trade of illegally obtained tobacco products, which envisages up to 10 years of imprisonment and a fine in the amount of 375 thousand Euros.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A bipartisan majority of the U.S. Senate on Tuesday urged President Joe Biden’s administration to push Turkey to do more to protect human rights.
Fifty-four of the 100 senators signed the letter, which accused Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of marginalizing domestic opposition, silencing critical media, jailing journalists and purging independent judges.
“We urge you to emphasize to President Erdogan and his administration that they should immediately end their crackdown on dissent at home and abroad, release political prisoners and prisoners of conscience, and reverse their authoritarian course,” the letter said.
NATO ally Turkey has said recently that it wants to improve relations with the United States under Biden, after Washington last year imposed sanctions over Turkey’s purchase of a Russian air defence system.
Biden is expected to be tougher on Ankara over its record on human rights. Since a failed coup in 2016, Erdogan’s government has detained nearly 300,000 people and has suspended or dismissed more than 150,000 civil servants. Hundreds of media outlets have been shut and dozens of opposition lawmakers have been jailed.