Two fintech startups, Solfeh and Kaoun, will share $50,000 in grant capital provided by MetLife Foundation after being selected by their peers through a process known as “peer selected investment.”
Solfeh is a Jordanian micro-lending platform, providing same-day emergency cash advancements to salaried employees.
Kaoun enables unbanked and underbanked individuals and businesses access to financial services through identification, payment and credit solutions and is based in Tunisia.
The cohort included eleven startups working on many aspects of financial health — including helping unbanked individuals gain access to formal financial services, creating digital identities for refugees and migrant workers, helping small business owners access affordable credit, and helping people in the region earn, save and invest for the future.
The startups competed in a Venture Showcase in front of a panel of judges from MetLife Foundation, Endeavor Jordan, Flat6Labs and Arab Bank. Kader, a Jordanian-based online recruitment platform targeted towards blue-collar and fast-moving jobs, took home a cash prize of $5,000 from MetLife Foundation.
The program was part of Finance Forward, a multi-year global coalition led by founding partners MetLife Foundation, PayPal, and Village Capital to support entrepreneurs on four continents who are building tech-enabled solutions to challenges around financial health, economic mobility, and community resilience.
Village Capital operates the most active financial health accelerator in the world, including more than 20 past accelerators and bootcamps that have supported more than 200 startups. In 2019 Village Capital was named Best Fintech Accelerator by Finovate.
Alicia Sornson is the Manager for Programs and Partnerships in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), where she develops strategy and programs that find, train and support entrepreneurs solving problems in the region.