HEC Paris MBA Students win €10,000 FinTech Challenge

From language barriers, to finding accommodation, to sorting out finances: these are just some of the major issues that need to be tackled when migrating to another country. With an estimated 258 million international migrants worldwide, the displacement crisis is a prevalent issue for many countries.

It was with this problem in mind that five HEC Paris MBA students, Nefé Etomi, Eduardo Ortiz, Prabhu Awasthi, Alexandre Marc and Edgar Ochoa (all Class of 2020), created Le Projet Suré, an idea that secured them the win and €10,000 at the Payments-4-Good Challenge held during last month’s MasterCard Innovation Forum.

Six HEC Paris teams entered the competition after getting through the first round at the FinTech Producthon 2018 earlier this year. Their final challenge: create a for-profit FinTech project that would improve the lives of a community of 100,000 people. After several weeks of preparation, the teams gathered in Paris to present their ideas. Le Projet Suré impressed the judges and won the gold.

But how did Le Projet Suré team members come up with their winning idea? Originating from Mexico and Venezuela respectively, Eduardo and Edgar know firsthand just how pressing an issue the displacement crisis is. “These people are in very difficult situations and we wanted to create something that would ease their pain,” explains Edgar.

“We designed an inclusive FinTech solution to provide migrants with a secure identity, a safer alternative to carrying cash, and access to job opportunities,” summarizes Eduardo. Their solution also lets friends and family quickly send money in case of emergencies.

The team is due to meet with MasterCard to discuss the future of Le Projet Suré later this month.