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KARACHI: The Bank of Punjab (BoP) has joined hands with Google Cloud Startup Competition Pakistan 2024 as its strategic partner which is being organised at national level by Google Cloud Partner Tech Valley and supported by Google Developers Group throughout Pakistan. This partnership marks a significant milestone in the journey to uncover and nurture Pakistan’s most promising tech startups, positioning them prominently on the regional innovation map.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Bank of Punjab as a strategic partner for the Google Cloud Startup Competition,” said Umar Farooq, CEO of Tech Valley Pakistan. “This collaboration strengthens our mission to empower Pakistan’s most innovative startups and propel them onto the global stage.”

Bank of Punjab (BoP), a champion of Pakistan’s fintech and startup scene, partnered with LUMS and NIC in 2022 to set up the innovation centre and last year launched the nationwide “Sprint Pakistan Powered by digiBOP Programme”. BOP sponsored trips of the top 10 Winners to Singapore to participate in Singapore Fintech Festival 2023, which gave them immense pitching, networking and partnering opportunities with Global VCs, Tech companies and Financial Institutions.

“Looking forward to collaborating with Google on cutting-edge technologies like AI and cloud to empower Pakistan’s startups, besides conventional digital banking products we have a great focus on Banking as a Service, API based banking, Super App journey, Embedded Finance, and developing a Sandbox, which makes Integration and collaboration with Startup & Fintechs easy. Supporting the startup ecosystem is BoP’s key strategic pillar and is also very close to my heart.” Said Imran Ashraf, Head Digital Banking, at Bank of Punjab

The Google Cloud Startup Competition Pakistan 2024 invites startups to compete in five key areas: AI, E-commerce, Fintech, Frontier Technologies, and Sustainability. Winners in each track will receive PKR 1 million and connect with VCs.

“Bank of Punjab has a long-standing track record of nurturing Pakistani startups and bringing them to regional markets. We look forward to working together to unearth new talents and enable them with resources to thrive.” said Farhan Qureshi, Country Director, Pakistan, Google.

The Google Cloud Startup Competition Pakistan 2024 has additionally garnered support from various key stakeholders in the startup ecosystem, including sponsors Alethea AI, Tridorian, Aspire, OPEN Silicon Valley and Bookme.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2024

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