Tuesday March 05, 2024

SCBPL awards grants to start-ups

By News Desk
November 30, 2023

KARACHI: Standard Chartered Bank Pakistan Limited (SCBPL) announced the winners of its fifth annual WomenInTech programme, which supports women entrepreneurs in technology-based businesses.

The programme, launched in Pakistan in 2019 in partnership with INNOVentures Global (Private) Limited, aims to foster gender representation and financial inclusion within the tech sector. It offers a capacity-building programme and a seed grant for the selected start-ups.

Standard Chartered Bank Pakistan Limited (SCBPL) Islamic Banking (Sadiq) Main Branch, I.I.Chundrigar Rd Karachi. —Facebook/Spacedesignarchitect
Standard Chartered Bank Pakistan Limited (SCBPL) Islamic Banking (Sadiq) Main Branch, I.I.Chundrigar Rd Karachi. —Facebook/Spacedesignarchitect

This year, the programme received more than 1,700 applications from over 100 cities and towns, representing 14 different business verticals. A cohort of 25 start-ups was selected for the final round, after pitching their ideas to a screening jury.

The cohort underwent a 2.5-month training programme, where they learned business management skills and received mentorship from industry experts and role models. They also worked on their proposed technology projects, which ranged from health-tech, hygiene products, fintech, air-quality, agri-tech, ed-tech and more.

The winners of the programme were announced at a virtual ceremony, where they received grants worth a total of Rs10 million to scale up their businesses. The programme has awarded approximately Rs30 million as grant money since its inception.

Rehan Shaikh, Chief Executive Officer of SCBPL, congratulated the winners and said the programme was committed to empowering female entrepreneurs and fostering an inclusive and diverse tech ecosystem.

"The bank is committed to promote financial inclusion and support sustainable growth on a global scale. To date, we have awarded more than Rs30 million as grants to further scale some of the most exciting ventures, reflecting our commitment to empower entrepreneurs and foster an inclusive and diverse tech ecosystem," Shaikh said in a statement.