Starting in April, select financial technology startups will gain access to a heavy-hitting list of corporations motivated to run pilots and enter licensing agreements during the BridgeCommunity’s second North American cohort. This year’s corporate roster adds Porsche Financial Services and Suntrust Bank to the lineup from 2016, including Coca-Cola, COX Enterprises, InterContinental Hotels Group, The Weather Company, and Capgemini.
With the sole objective to help startups find the right customer inside the walls of large corporations, the BridgeCommunity engineers and accelerates startup and corporate relationships. Over six months, startups receive world-class enterprise sales, marketing, and negotiations training to understand corporate innovation needs and hone offerings. Participating corporations are also coached on minimizing roadblocks to streamline pilots and simplify contracts. The program then makes targeted introductions and mediates relationships to get deals done. There’s no IP or equity taken, or investment given, to the participating startups.
This program is based in Atlanta, but open to FinTech startups across the United States. It doesn’t require startups to relocate and only asks for a commitment of two hours a week from one team member. The BridgeCommunity is based in Atlanta because it is a hotbed for FinTech startups and Fortune 500s:
- Georgia FinTech companies generate annual revenues of more than $72 billion, placing 3rd in the nation.
- Roughly 100 FinTech companies are headquartered or have a significant presence in Georgia. Six of the 10 largest US Payment processing firms are GA-based.
- Georgia FinTech companies process over 118 billion transactions per year representing over $2 trillion of purchase volume each year, supporting nearly 4 million merchants
Atlanta is also home to the FinTech Atlanta Taskforce, an organization that works to recruit and retain companies, capital and talent in the FinTech industry. As a partner of the BridgeCommunity, the FinTech Taskforce will provide a depth of knowledge into the program by tapping into their networks, creating additional training opportunities and social events with guest speakers.
“We couldn’t be more pleased to partner with the BridgeCommunity’s FinTech program. Their high involvement and hands-on model of corporate engagement plays to Atlanta’s strength as home to so many leading global FinTech and Fortune 100 corporations. This program will be a game changer for the early stage startups that come through the program.” – Spencer White, Innovation Co-Chair for FinTech Atlanta
BridgeCommunity track record:
In the first North American cohort, which included 10 startups and 5 corporations, the commercialization program went beyond enterprise and startup matchmaking – catalyzing nine pilots and proof-of-concepts. During the program, participating startups collectively hired 32 new employees, experienced an average increase of 150% in month over month revenue, and raised $2.9M in VC funding. Check out this full run-down of the results.
This year, the program is aiming to significantly increase the number of participating startups:
Applications for startups to participate in BridgeCommuniy’s 2017 cohort are open on f6s until March 28: https://www.f6s.com/atlantabridgecommunity2017.