Biowatch wins in Visa’s Everywhere Initiative03.03.2017 09:27
Biowatch’s vein recognition technology won them € 25’000 in the Visa Everywhere Initiative, which was held for the first time in Europe. The pitch competition was kicked-off at the World Mobile Congress. Biowatch also qualified for the larger European competition which awards €50’000 and the opportunity to work with Visa.
Everywhere Initiative is Visa’s third annual innovation platform and competition designed to harness new thinking from within the startup community and encourage the development of the “next big thing” in payments. The Initiative was launched in 2015 in the US and was later expanded to Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, and China. This year for the first time, the Competition was introduced in Europe.
Five startups from Europe, Biowatch, Evopark, Kwik, Maintool and Wia were among the finalists who participated in a live competition in Barcelona during Mobile World Congress 130 Visa clients and business partners. To win the competition the five startups were required to address how they can better integrate payment solutions with IoT devices to create a more seamless commerce experience.
“We're thrilled to launch the Visa Everywhere Initiative in Europe with such a great group of startups,” said Shiv Singh, senior vice president, innovation and strategic partnerships at Visa. “The finalists we saw today raised the bar and could potentially be some of the most innovative technologies we have seen to date in the competition,” added Singh, who served as one of the judges in the Barcelona competition.
The Lausanne based startup Biowatch was announced the winner of Visa’s Everywhere Initiative and was awarded a €25,000 cash prize. Biowatch developed the first vein pattern technology, which allows NFC payment and authentication.
“Winning the Visa prize is incredible validation of the work we have done so far and offers great perspective on the future ahead,” said Matthias Vanoni, CEO and co-founder of Biowatch.
“The possibilities of where this technology can go are endless—from your wrist to your steering wheel and beyond. Technologies like Biowatch are why IoT is the hot topic at Mobile World Congress as we are actually seeing the future come to fruition now,” said Avin Arumugam, senior vice president of Internet of Things at Visa.
In addition to the Visa award, Biowatch has qualified to compete in the larger European competition, where they will compete for €50,000 to run a pilot program with Visa or in partnership with Visa’s clients. The startup will also get mentorship and access to Visa APIs.
“Your watch, your Id”
After a successfully closing an oversubscribed seed round with 1.2 M, Biowatch has continued to thrive. Not only did the startup win Visa’s support, it also awarded the first prize at the Swiss Fintech Convention in Geneva. The startup believe that with the introduction of their technology, everyone’s watch or wearable to which they attach the Biowatch module will be their new identification enabling them to access their e-banking account, open their car, unlock their computer, access websites and buildings.