BBVA Open Talent encourages international participation in its fifth annual competition for entrepreneurs

Kick-off of the 2013 competition for start-ups

-- BBVA Open Talent 2013 is looking for the best and most innovative technology and banking-related projects.

-- Each of the two winners will receive up to euro 100,000 in the form of BBVA's collaboration or capital injection in the new company.

-- This is the fifth annual Open Talent competition and BBVA is emphasising its global reach by encouraging participation from entrepreneurs in Latin America and the United States.

-- This year introduces rewards for the project that receives the most votes via the internet. It will be designated "Most voted in BBVA Open Talent."

BBVA is holding the BBVA Open Talent competition for the fifth year running. The aim is to find and reward innovative entrepreneurs with up to euro 100,000 for the best projects of less than two years old, related to technology and the banking sector.

Mar 19, 2013, 18:26 ET from BBVA

MADRID, March 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Since it started, BBVA Open Talent has attracted more than 1,600 projects. In 2012 there were more than 500 participants of which 35 percent came from Latin America. The rest were submitted from a dozen other countries including Germany, France, Russia and the United States.

This year BBVA is emphasising the competition's global nature by boosting international participation. "The main goals of BBVA's open innovation strategy are to create a global knowledge network and establish interaction with ecosystems of entrepreneurs in each geographic region," said Hugo Najera, BBVA's chief innovation officer.

Motivating entrepreneurs and detecting talent are some of the goals of BBVA Open Talent. The program endeavours to capture knowledge that will help the bank remain at the leading edge of technology and uncover innovations that are applicable to banking.

The only condition that BBVA imposes is that not more than two years have passed since the company was incorporated or the project started. Participants compete in one of two categories.

  • New banking: for projects related to new ways of banking such as greater focus on customers or those that improve the user's experience.
  • Innovation & Technology: for projects related to society (health, education, work, travel, tourism, smart cities, etc); to technology platforms (mobile app security, cloud computing, hardware and software, etc); to e-business, e-commerce, gaming and social networks; or related to web 2.0, etc.

Phases of the competition

Phase 1 (March 19 - May 8). Presentation of projects: The call for projects will open on March 19 via BBVA's Innovation Center web site:

Entries will be accepted up to 11 a.m. (CET) on May 8, 2013.

Phase 2 (May 13-27). Voting: During this period the public can vote on-line via the BBVA Innovation Center web site.

Internet votes represent 10 percent of the points needed to reach the final stages of the competition. This means a project may be one of those with most public votes and still not be one of the 20 finalists.

Phase 3 (June 4). Selection of finalists: During this phase all the projects will be assessed and the BBVA Open Talent panel will select 20 finalists.

Phase 4 (end of June).  Presentation to the judges and announcement of winners: BBVA will help the 20 finalists prepare for the last presentation, which this year will take place in Buenos Aires during the Red Innova event.

After the projects have been presented to the public, the judges will decide the winners. Their names will be announced at a ceremony, which will be presided by Gustavo Vinacua, the director of BBVA's Innovation Center.


The two €100,000 prizes in the competition will take the form of business collaboration or share capital injection in the start-up entity. The purpose of this is to create a link between BBVA and the winners.

"Most voted in BBVA Open Talent 2013"

This year Open Talent is introducing a new reward for the project that achieves the greatest support in the on-line voting.

Apart from a seal of approval for "Most voted in BBVA Open Talent 2013," the winner will be invited to the next Emtech Spain, with two tickets for the conference program organized by MIT and invitations to participate in the Investment Forum.

The 20 finalists will receive a seal that identifies them as "Finalist in BBVA Open Talent 2013."

All developments related to the competition can be followed live through the official Twitter account @Opentalent2013 with hashtag: #BBVAOpentalent.  

For more information on BBVA visit:

About BBVA

BBVA is a customer-centric global financial services group founded in 1857. The Group has a solid position in Spain, is the largest financial institution in Mexico, and has leading franchises in South America and the Sunbelt region of the United States. Its diversified business is geared toward high-growth markets and relies on technology as a key sustainable competitive advantage. BBVA ranks among the leading eurozone banks in terms of return on equity and efficiency. Corporate responsibility is at the core of its business model. BBVA fosters financial education and inclusion, and supports scientific research and culture. It operates with the highest integrity, a long-term vision and applies best practices. More information about the BBVA Group can be found at