Mastercard: co-innovates to reshape the future of Commerce
The program aims to address the needs of the underbanked to bridge the digital divide. Mastercard will work with the 10 fintechs to accelerate their ambitions to change the world.
Over six months, Mastercard will co-innovate with those in the program to uncover opportunities, leveraging Mastercard’s technology, expertise and network.
With the accelerated shift to digital experiences and evolving consumer behaviours as a result of COVID-19 creating a need for innovative solutions, Mastercard highlights that in both developed and developing areas, technology could be the difference between merely surviving and thriving.
“We all thrive when fintechs have access to the technology they need to reach scale and democratize finances. We are partnering with the newest fintechs joining Start Path to drive inclusion, innovation and trust with alternative ways to pay and authenticate, powerful solutions for small businesses, new ways to create efficiency for business payments, as well as address the wealth gap,” commented Ken Moore, Chief Innovation Officer at Mastercard.
Reporting that the global market for fintech products and services is expected to reach US$310bn by 2022, Mastercard emphasises its commitment to building new solutions with partners such as those in the Start Path network.
As part of the program, the 10 companies will have access to connect with Mastercard’s global ecosystem of banks and merchants, as well as technology and digital companies, with ambitions to scale their business to deliver transformative solutions.
Microsoft: Building a secure foundation to drive NASCAR
Microsoft is a key partner of The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing (NASCAR) and together they are driving ahead to create an inclusive and immersive new fan experience (FX).
These long-term partners have not only navigated the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic with the use of Microsoft Teams and Microsoft 365, but are now looking to a future packed with virtual events to enhance the FX, well beyond NASCAR’S famous Daytona racetrack.
“Together, we've created a secure environment that's allowed for collaboration, but the future is all about the fans”, said Melinda Cook, General Manager for Microsoft South USA Commercial Business, who cited a culture of transparency, passion, adaptiveness, and a growth mindset as to why this alignment is so successful.”
“We've partnered to create a fluid, immersive experience for the users that is supported by a secure foundation with Microsoft in the background. We are focused on empowering and enabling customers and businesses, like NASCAR, to reach their full potential. We do this with our cloud platform which provides data insights and security.”
“Our cloud environment allows NASCAR to move forward with their digital transformation journey while we are in the background,” said Cook who highlights that Microsoft is helping NASCAR
- Empower employees productivity and collaboration
- Improve fan engagement and experience
- Improve environment security and IT productivity
- Improve racing operations
Microsoft Teams, which is part of the Microsoft 365 suite, enabled employees to work remotely, while staying productive, during the pandemic. “This allowed people to provide the same level of productivity with the use of video conference and instant messaging to collaborate on documents. Increased automation also allows the pit crews, IT, and the business to focus on safety, racing operations, and on the fan experience,” said Cook.
“We have started to innovate to create a more inclusive fanbase, this includes using Xbox to give people the experience of being a virtual racer or even leveraging some of the tools in Microsoft Teams to have a virtual ride along experience.”
“These environments are how we create a more inclusive and immersive experience for the fans. We're working on a virtual fan wall which allows people from new locations to participate in these events,” said Cook, who pointed out Microsoft was also helping bring legacy experiences alive from NASCAR’s archives.
“At Microsoft we can take it one level further by letting fans know what it's like to see the pit crew experience, the data and all the behind-the-scenes action. We will continue to improve automation with machine learning and artificial intelligence, from marketing to IT operations to finance to racing operations,” said Cook.
Christine Stoffel-Moffett, Vice President of Enterprise Technology at NASCAR, said: “Microsoft is one of our key partners. They have been instrumental in helping the NASCAR enterprise technology team re-architect our Microsoft systems to ensure an advanced level of security across our environment, contribute to our business outcomes, and focus on fan experience.”