Hardly any other industry thrives as much on an open exchange between established players and creative newcomers as financial technology. Fintechs compete for broad-based perception just as large providers acquire specific expertise and completely new approaches. Against this background, Worldline brought together all those involved in the payment technology ecosystem, including Fintechs, banks, merchants and, of course, Worldline’s own technology experts, in its first public Europe-wide “hackathon” called the e-Payments Challenge in September 2018.
The set-up is a true industry novelty: all projects are defined and selected by Worldline’s customers based on their market strategies. As business partners of Worldline, they present their very own challenges to Fintechs for competitive selection and work together with them to co-create innovations on a topic.
Billee was one of the 15 start-up teams from around the world that competed in the 2018 e-Payments Challenge. All teams were given 48 hours to design solutions for Worldline clients using Worldline assets including APIs, offerings and expertise in R&D and regulation. After many hours of dedication and hard work, Billee pitched their solution for app-based splitting of the payment for a restaurant bill to Accor and the jury and were selected as a winner.
Succeeding in the challenge provided Billee with an opportunity to work with Accor and bring their ideas to life. Like all the other participating teams, the Billee team gained experience and insight from their exposure to industry leaders and also benefitted from Worldline’s international engagement with Fintech which stretches from international hubs to marketing collaborations and venture capital.
e-Payments Challenge 2019
After the premiere in Paris last year, Worldline is now bringing the e-Payments Challenge to Frankfurt. The event will once again be co-hosted by Accor. From the 17th-19th of September 2019, the sharpest minds come together in a technology melting pot to create solutions for the industry's challenges, from B2C payments, P2P and B2B payments to payment data analysis, fraud management and open banking. Again, Worldline will select participating Fintechs from applicants across all segments of payment technology - and beyond.
Participating Worldline customers will not only be a part of the e-Payments Challenge by contributing tasks, they will also have the opportunity to nominate Fintechs and experiment with them. At the end of the event, they will put together an applicable solution that significantly shortens their go-to-market cycle – as in the case of Accor and Billee.
Kevin Quere, Online Payment Systems Manager of Accor, states:
“Accor is very much open to new ideas and solutions outside our current ecosystem and the e-Payments Challenge is a great venue to discuss new ideas and share our experience and insights. We chose to work with Worldline and the start-ups to propose challenges because we wanted to find the right start-up to build something for today and tomorrow. In working with Billee we found the right solution and features to match our needs for improving our customer experience.“
Ghislain Rouëssé, CEO of Billee states:
"Participating in the 2018 Worldline e-Payments Challenge was phenomenal. It was a great opportunity to put both our agile mind-set and solutions to the service of Accor’s strategic ambitions. As a Fintech, working with Worldline and Accor was a kind of David & Goliath alliance focused on a common aim: deliver great added-value to end consumers. For any start-up businesses participating in this year’s Challenge, our advice is to be bold and focus on the customer needs. You have to bring your best thinking and product to make sure it addresses the challenge set before you."
Marc-Henri Desportes, Deputy CEO of Worldline:
“I have been amazed by the creative ideas generated at the e-Payments Challenge and even more so by the dedication of the participants. This event has proven to be incredibly valuable for Worldline, our customers and the start-ups; not only in terms of immediate innovative payment solutions but also regarding our global strategy for delivering customer transformation. Among the various projects that resulted from this event, we are glad to continue working with ACCOR and Billee, and we are looking forward to facilitating co-innovation again at this year’s e-Payments Challenge.“