Barclays has recently announced signing contracts with eight companies that participated in the bank’s New York City fintech accelerator program, among which are two blockchain startups: Chainalysis and Wave.
“The first New York cohort of the Barclays Accelerator program has been an outstanding success,” said Derek White, Chief Design and Innovation Officer.
“Each of the 11 companies that participated in the program has significantly progressed their concept, and has contributed to shaping the future of financial services. Today’s demo day is about celebrating the successes, partnership and an exciting future with some of the leading start-ups in the fintech ecosystem right now. Barclays is proud to be at the forefront of the fintech revolution.”
The accelerator program, powered by Techstars, is an intensive program for fintech startups, designed to help businesses deliver breakthrough innovations. An audience of more than 400 industry leaders, serial entrepreneurs, senior executives and corporate partners attended the event to hear from the 11 companies.
“This program, this day, is simply one manifestation of our commitment to lighting up fintech and connecting the local New York entrepreneur ecosystem,” White said. ” We’ve done it in London, invested heavily over the past two years to connect the ecosystem there, and we’re doing it now in New York City.”
The deals with the companies come a few months following Barclays’ July accelerator in London during which the company announced it was “exploring opportunities” with seven companies, unveiling simultaneously one contract with bitcoin exchange Safello. Barclays’ interest in blockchain technology has been expressed by a number of initiatives the bank has undertaken to explore how it could possibly use distributed ledgers technology to “revolutionize finance.”
Chainalysis will deal with companies who are active in the Bitcoin and blockchain space. Barclays’ financial crime and transaction monitoring teams will be using Chainalysis to obtain information from the blockchain about their customer’s financial transactions, giving the bank more effective control in working with the technology. Wave, in its turn, will experiment with an electronic, paperless Bills of Lading process using blockchain technology, in conjunction with Barclays’ Corporate Bank.
“It’s amazing to be part of the burgeoning fintech ecosystem in New York City and play an active part in the transformation of the industry,” said Jenny Fielding, Managing Director of Techstars. “The eleven startups in this class are each tackling a different part of financial services, providing further evidence that the category is a massive market opportunity. Working in unison with Barclays has proven to be a strong partnership for these high growth startups and we’re excited to roll out additional fintech programs worldwide.”
Barclays has set up two bitcoin labs in London for blockchain entrepreneurs, businesses and coders. In September, Derek White unveiled that the bank is planning to conduct over 45 experiments with blockchain technology.