Venture Center, ICBA launch 3rd ThinkTECH Accelerator

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 509 views 

The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA), in partnership with The Venture Center and the state of Arkansas, announced on Wednesday (Jan. 6) its third annual ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator cohort.

ICBA and The Venture Center chose the 2021 cohort from hundreds of applicants following a rigorous selection process. Company-focused products cover a range of offerings including cybersecurity, lending, customer engagement and financial literacy.

Participants completed a five-week incubator prior to the start of an intense virtual 12-week bootcamp. Throughout the program, ICBA executives, along with community bank executives and a network of industry leaders will provide mentorship and critical feedback designed to help these promising fintechs tailor their solutions for the community bank marketplace.

The 2021 ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator cohort includes:

  • Agent.IQ in San Francisco, Calif., digital customer engagement
  • Artis in Atlanta, Ga., embedded lending at the point of sale
  • Beauceron Security in New Brunswick, Canada, cybersecurity training
  • Finosec in Alpharetta, Ga., cyber preparedness and governance
  • Harness in Tampa, Fla., card-linked fundraising
  • Hurdlr in Washington, D.C., 1099 economy tools
  • Shastic in Berkeley, Calif., automated loan origination
  • UPSWOT in Charlotte, N.C., App data aggregation for small businesses insights
  • Zogo Finance in Durham, N.C., financial wellness education
  • Z Suite Technologies in Burlington, Mass., digital escrow tools

“When community banks pair with promising fintechs the result is a formula for success that benefits local customers and communities,” ICBA President and CEO Rebeca Romero Rainey said. “This rang true during the COVID-19 pandemic when previous ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator cohort showed up with community bank-focused tech solutions that helped community banks continue in their role as financial first responders through the Paycheck Protection Program when their communities needed it most.  I look forward to working with this new cohort and continuing our members’ innovation journey so they can continue to help their customers and communities in times of both challenge and opportunity.”

“Arkansas is the birthplace of fintech, and the state continues to birth fintech projects that are both down-to-earth and world changing,” Gov. Asa Hutchinson said. “This year’s slate of companies keeps the tradition alive, and by the time these entrepreneurs finish this intense 12-week ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator bootcamp at The Venture Center, they will be helping community banks flourish and further cementing Arkansas’s reputation as the home of cutting-edge technologies.”

“The ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator continues to serve a critical role in successful collaborations between community banks and fintech companies during the most challenging economic environment of our lives,” The Venture Center Executive Director Wayne Miller said. “The digital transformation is rapidly gaining speed, and community banks are effectively meeting those challenges and opportunities thanks to ICBA’s focus on community bank-enabling technology. The Venture Center’s role in nurturing an environment to advance community banks and their customers is an honor, particularly at a time when technology is critical to providing financial and physical safety.”

For more information about the ICBA ThinkTECH Accelerator, visit here.