Singapore: Online payment company PayPal has launched its first startup incubation programme in Singapore with three financial technology, or fintech startups selected. The nine-month programme will offer the startups coaching and mentorship by PayPal executives and other experts, as well as networking opportunities.
Paypal also said the startups would operate from a conducive co-working space to promote collaboration and innovation.
One of these startups is Prosecure, which aims to allow online shoppers to return their products for free. Its co-founder Wei Zhu, who was formerly chief technology officer at ride-hailing app Grab, said free returns have helped merchants achieve 300 per cent in repeat sales. He added that free returns include the cost of shipping the product back to the online store.
Another company is Invoiceinterchange, a peer-to-peer platform that allows small- and medium-sized enterprises to raise money. These SMEs can auction unpaid invoices to investors, which CEO Brian Teng said can help improve cash flow for businesses and give investors an alternative investment option.
Aiming to eliminate the costs of sending and spending money, ONEPAY is the third startup under the programme. It taps on Bitcoin and Blockchain technology and allows users to make payments to nine million merchants around the world through NFC-enabled credit card terminals without incurring foreign exchange fees. ONEPAY’s Chief Experience Officer Paul K compared the service to moving from sending messages with a fee, to using services such as WhatsApp, which is free.
The startups were selected based on criteria such as management team, differentiation of product and services as well as scalability and profitability of the markets they are aimed at.