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Copenhagen Fintech Accelerator

Accelerace strengthens fintech focus with new collaboration

2018-11-14

Together with Nykredit, Danske Bank, and Copenhagen FinTech, Accelerace has created a new ambitious accelerator dedicated to fintechs. Copenhagen Fintech Accelerator has already raised funds from the Danish Industry Foundation. The goal is to open up the Nordic markets to foreign companies and attract fresh talents to the Danish fintech ecosystem.

Denmark will soon become the home of a unique fintech accelerator designed specifically to attract global talent to the Nordic fintech ecosystem. Copenhagen FinTech has joined forces with Accelerace to create an inclusive incubation and acceleration environment to support the international focus of the accelerator.

Two large banks, Nykredit and Danske Bank, have partnered in on the Copenhagen Fintech Accelerator, which has also been funded with more than one million Danish kroner over the course of the next 2,5 years from the Danish Industry Foundation as part of a larger global fintech alliance project under the auspices of Copenhagen FinTech.

“Accelerace has ascertained that within the realm of tech, fintech is the sector moving the fastest. There is a recognized need from the end users. A need for innovation in the infrastructure and the services that the banks provide. The banks are aware of this and have been aware of it for years. That means, that they know more about what it takes to collaborate with startups than many other established lines of businesses and that sets the bar high for both the future partnerships and for the work in Copenhagen Fintech Accelerator,” says Anders Handlos Grauslund, Business Accelerator and Investment Manager in Accelerace.

Where Copenhagen FinTech has an incubation environment and a deep network into Danish fintech, Accelerace has a proven and successful mentor model and a model to create sustainable corporate startup collaborations.

“The combination of complimentary offers makes this a unique accelerator. To the companies, we can offer a place to work from, a network, a corps of mentors, a solid accelerator program, and the opportunity of getting a preseed investment or the possibility of collaborating with one of our strong partners.”

The industrial sectors are fusing

“One of the most interesting aspects of the project is, that the boundaries between the different sectors are fusing. As soon as a company reaches a certain size it will have to contain both a finance department, insurance, daily banking and so on. I 2018, The Danish Industry Foundation came up with a new strategy that broadens the understanding of the term industrial. We expect that much of the technology that fintechs are early adopters of will be part of the industry as well. It makes more and more sense that fintech and the classical industry blend,” says Ole Østrup, Chief of Communication in the Danish Industry Foundation, which supports the acceleration program through the initiative “Global FinTech Alliances for Growth”.

Copenhagen Fintech, which proposed the idea to the Danish Industry Foundation, was initially founded to grow the Danish fintech ecosystem. The organization built the incubator Copenhagen Fintech Lab but had more in mind from the beginning; the ambition to create an application-based program targeting both Danish and International startups to attract more foreign talent and growth companies, says Simon Schou, Chief Innovation Officer in Copenhagen FinTech.

“We needed a program with international scale. With the new Copenhagen Fintech Accelerator, we are taking the next step in our vision of creating a strong fintech innovation environment in Denmark. We want to accelerate startups faster, and we hope to be able to supplement the pool of talent in the Danish ecosystem. Denmark can become a gateway to attract foreign talents to all of the Nordics,” he says.

Two of the biggest banks in Denmark are partnering with Copenhagen Fintech Accelerator

Both Nykredit and Danske Bank are partners in Copenhagen Fintech Accelerator. Together the two banks span almost every service that anyone anywhere in Denmark will ever need from a financial institution. And both banks agree that they need new ideas from startups to be on top of their game in a national as well as a Nordic context.

“We want to be part of turning Denmark and the Nordics into a whole as an area that takes the lead in generating new innovative fintech companies. The better the ecosystem is, the better the banks will also be. We see this initiative as an opportunity to support this formation and invest in it so we, too, can integrate the best solutions into our business and deliver the best services to our customers,” says Jon Schäffer, Head of Strategic Partnerships in Danske Bank.

Over the course of the latter five years, the banks have come to realize that they cannot develop new solutions fast enough of a high enough caliber without agile partners that comes with new inspiration and perspectives to the established corporates. But It is also of great importance to the banks to provide value to the environment.

“First and foremost, we see this project as a great opportunity to strengthen our network and establish new dialogues with fintech, that think of and see differently on some of the challenges we try to solve in Nykredit. This also means that we want to go actively into the project as a sounding board to the companies and continue working with that or the fintechs that comes up with the strongest solutions to fit our needs,” says Morten Møller Madsen, Executive Vice President in Nykredit.

The accelerator is part of a project under the alliance collaboration “Global FinTech Alliances for Growth”. Read more about it at https://fintechlab.global/

About Copenhagen Fintech Accelerator:

The goal of Copenhagen Fintech Accelerator is to level up the value proposition for fintechs to attract international talent and to unite the Nordic ecosystem by creating a second-to-none fintech ecosystem accelerator with world-class mentoring and corporate partnerships to fuel innovation and create growth.

Copenhagen Fintech Accelerator is built on four pillars; a world-class accelerator, strong Nordic corporate partnerships, a dedicated seed fund, and a unique co-working space.

The accelerator is sprint based and will run from November 2018 until June 2019 and will accelerate six startups in the first batch.