OTP Bank is launching the third edition of its international startup partnership program called OTP Startup Partner program, which is now accepting applications from later-stage startups with validated, market-ready products and from scaleups.
Applications are open until November 22 and the program will be launched next spring with the aim of facilitating collaboration between innovative companies and OTP Group. Admitted startups will have the opportunity to carry out pilot projects with the bank and, later on, to become long-term partners of OTP Group. They will receive dedicated support from bank managers, seasoned mentors and expert partners.
The upcoming edition of the program offers even broader business development opportunities for the applicants. The initiative has been scaled to Group level, that is, for the first time, five subsidiaries of the OTP Banking Group will also join the program besides the Hungarian headquarter. Therefore, pilot project will be conducted in numerous countries of the CEE region besides Hungary. Additionally—since the goal of the initiative is to smoothly transform as many startups as possible into long-term partners of the Group after the 3-month pilot period—the program is supplemented with a 6-month “rollout” period aimed at supporting further cooperation. This phase will be accessible for top-performing cohort companies.
Besides providing startups and scaleups with the opportunity to work on results-oriented projects based on real business needs, the program also places emphasis on business development acceleration through extensive mentor network and international networking opportunities. This is also reflected in the expanding pool of program partners, ranging from leading international corporations to recognized innovation ecosystem orchestrators.
The OTP Startup Partner Program is looking for applicants in the following 5+1 categories:
- Advanced data & analytics tools,
- Customer experience and customer servicing,
- Internal efficiency,
- Product innovations,
- SME banking,
- Entirely innovative and disruptive solutions, which do not fall under any of the above-listed categories but are related to the banking sector.
Applications will be evaluated in a three-step selection process. After completing the online application form, selected candidates will be invited to an online interview with the representatives of the relevant OTP business units; finally, the most promising applicants will have the chance to meet the Group’s decision-makers in Budapest at the two-day Selection Camp event in January 2020. The three-month pilot and mentoring period will last from early March until late May 2020, during which collaboration will take place mainly online. Representatives of the cohort companies will be invited to Hungary or to the offices of other participating subsidiary banks for a few days on a monthly basis to review pilot progress and participate at in-person workshops and mentoring sessions.
The pilot results will be presented by the startups at the Demo Day in late May to the management of the banking group, as well as the representatives of numerous leading corporate partners and investors. Subsequently, the most successful cohort companies can continue their collaboration with OTP Group over the 6-month rollout phase.
“Over the course of our previous two startup programs, we examined nearly 500 startups for possible collaboration, and conducted pilot projects with 17 of them. Prior to announcing a new program, we always strive to act upon the learnings of the previous batches, therefore this year, we are completing the 3-month pilot period with a 6-month rollout phase for a further boost towards long-term cooperation. We are also excited to expand the program to five subsidiaries of OTP Group, which have indicated their intention of joining the initiative. Thanks to their participation and support, this year’s program will be fully international, both regarding the profile of applying startups and the piloting business units.” said András Fischer, head of OTP Bank’s Retail Innovation Department, in relation to the launch of the program.
More information about the OTP Startup Partner program can be found here.