FEXCO today launched [email protected], a third level innovation challenge specifically focused on the digital payments sector.

The programme invites students from the Business School in University College Cork (UCC) and Institute of Technology Tralee (ITT) to develop solutions specifically addressing issues or leveraging opportunities within the digital payments industry.

The challenge, this year themed Next Generation Financial Services Digital Platforms, welcomes submissions in 2 streams; theoretical and prototype. As organiser and sponsor FEXCO will make awards of up to €2,000 for the best submissions available up to a maximum of €5,000. Prototype submissions must demonstrate the idea in practice, while proposed theoretical solutions must be innovative, feasible and implementable.

Speaking at the launch FEXCO’s Barry O’Sullivan, Programme Coordinator commented: “We are very excited to launch this initiative today. Collaboration, both internally and with our partners, plays a key role when developing the next generation of this kind of technology and it is a cornerstone of the innovation model at FEXCO. Working in the FinTech space particularly, we are acutely aware that the next great ideas can come from anywhere and anyone.”

Dr Philip O’Reilly, Senior Lecturer at UCC said, “Cork University Business School is delighted to be collaborating with FEXCO on this initiative which provides an avenue for our students to develop and socialise, with industry colleagues, their ideas on highly disruptive technologies including Blockchain, Smart Contracts and PSD2.”

Bridget Crowley, Head of Department of Computing, Creative Media & Information Technology added, “IT Tralee is delighted to be involved with the FEXCO payments innovation challenge. Opportunities such as this provide our students with the chance to hone their problem-solving and technical skills in real world applications.”

In addition to the financial incentives, FEXCO is offering mentor and expert guidance from their own software and IT personnel. Students can contact FEXCO via email or through the dedicated [email protected] LinkedIn Group.

FEXCO’s Barry O’Sullivan concluded, “We want to encourage and support students in translating their inception into a real prototype or a workable solution for the payments industry and would encourage all of those thinking about getting involved to get in touch with the industry experts at FEXCO.”

All submissions will be judged based on their commercial viability among other criteria. The closing date for submissions is 31 January 2017. All ideas and innovations submitted will remain the intellectual property of the original creator(s).

To find out more visit www.fexco.com

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