Payments platform Qwikwire wins 5th GOAB startup competition

By Edd K. Usman

Qwikwire, which allows companies to collect payments from around the world, won the startup competition at the 5th Geeks on a Beach (GOAB) international startup conference in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan.

Tina Amper: Other finalists received partnership offers.

GOAB founder Tina Amper

The winner bested five other GOAB finalists, such as Cashwraps, DCLA (Diversified Computer Learning Approach), OnlyNote, Sellax, which was second runner up, and PhilSmile, first runner up.

Qwikwire has now positioned itself in the highly discriminating financial technology (fintech) field as a “secure international payments platform designed for enterprises.”

“We help enterprises in the Philippines to collect payments anywhere in the world. We give them two things: technology and the network. In technology, we provide customized solutions for real estate developers, BPOs, and banks to further enhance their accounting which other cross-border payments don’t do,” Quikwire said in a statement for the competition.

Its services include “sophisticated financial tools” among them, international credit/debit cards, ACH (automated clearing house) or electronic bank wires, and SWIFT (a member-owned global cooperative) that makes for efficient collection of payments; Qwikwire also enables payments through the internet.

In 2016, Qwikwire made a connection with GOAB 4, according to Tina Amper, founder of TechTalks.ph, main organizer of GOAB since 2013.

“They asked GOAB’s help to introduce them to a speaker from Silicon Valley,” she said, obviously seeking advice and inputs. “They did meet. How quickly they grew (after the meeting). They have won other startup competitions, so I am not surprised.”

She added that the other finalists in the 2017 GOAB had wide range of experiences, as she revealed that one of the finalists received a couple of partnership offers right after the pitch.

TechTalks.ph and co-organizer Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) held GOAB’s fifth iteration at Princesa Garden Island Resort in Puerto Princesa, luring over 400 participants coming from the government and private sector.

Also in attendance were successful technology entrepreneurs from Southeast Asia and the United States’ Silicon Valley technology hub.

“GOAB is a serious conversation that happens in a light environment. So, make the most of it,” said Jojo Flores, who co-founded Plug and Play, a startup accelerator housed in Silicon Valley, one of the mainstays at GOAB. He emphasized the importance of minding the country’s startup community.

“We have to engage with startups because they think out of the box. They’re faster, but we need to guide them to the right direction,” he said.

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