Have you heard of DFS Lab? You should have! DNF Lab is an early-stage incubator that supports high potential entrepreneurs to refine, grow and launch FinTech businesses in developing countries. Their second ever boot camp is about to take place in April 2017 in South Asia (Country TBD), where a select group of driven entrepreneurs ready to revolutionize the world will converge to. To attend, you must be a team that wishes to launch a company or very early stage startup, and have received less than USD $100K investment to date. Also, facing problems faced by low-income consumers must be a passion of yours! Your startup’s vision should be to create an innovative new technology to address one of DFS Lab’s priority areas.
If you manage to prove your mettle as a pioneering potential startup with a business model that empowers the poorest out there, profitably and at scale, there will be lots in store for you! Firstly, at the boot camp you’ll be offered mentorship and strategic counseling to teach you how to better build successful ventures that change the way low-income consumers interact with digital financial services. DFS Lab is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and housed at Caribou Digital, a specialist in building inclusive digital economies. Imagine what sort of entrepreneurs must be part of the extensive network that you’d have access to!
Secondly, if you’re part of the select few selected, you will go through a workshop to design, prototype and test new ideas using something called the Design Sprint Methodology, a process of structured brainstorming for answering critical business questions. By creating quick prototypes, you can get actual feedback and see if there’s a real potential for the solution you’ve created.
And finally, the cherry on top? The one team that has the best ideas will receive grant funding of up to USD $100K and 6 months of additional support from the DFS Lab. That’s a pretty big cherry! What are you waiting for? Jump on it and apply! You can check out a video of last year’s boot camp in Dar es Salaam, to get an idea of what you’d be missing if you don’t. You have until February 28th. While you wait for their response, join in on the discussion on Twitter @theDFSLab and #DFSLab
Best of luck, and remember that there are other funding opportunities that we’ve shared on Pitstop, check them out here. For example, are you a FinTech company, but DFS’s criteria doesn’t quite fit your profile? Check out the Barclays Accelerator. They’re still taking applications until February 5th.