A peer-to-peer payments bitcoin app ZapGo has been chosen along with five other fintech start-ups to take part in Barclays Africa 13-week TechLab accelerator programme in Cape Town, South Africa.

The tech accelerator was announced and applications accepted in July 2015. The programme led by industry leaders will provide start-ups with mentoring and development opportunities and will culminate in a demo day on 10 December where the participants will present their products to Barclays’ executives and potential investors.

Barclays has chosen six fintech start-ups including blockchain settlement company Capehill, digital commerce platform Intel World International Africa, web and mobile payments service for emerging markets Peach Payments, web-based invoicing platform Invoice Exchange and microlending firm Aella Credit.  ZapGo is the only bitcoin company among them. ZapGo is peer-to-peer payments platform which integrates bitcoin with Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) and mobile wallets to enable anyone with a mobile phone and internet connection to make international online payments.

“In order to compete, Barclays Africa needs to connect, shape and scale with these new industry players. We are looking for big, fresh ideas that promise to shake things up – be this in the financial services industry, the health sector, or anywhere else,” said Ashley Veasey, CIO at Barclays Africa.

Barclays Africa Group Limited is 62.3% owned by Barclays Bank PLC (Barclays) and is listed on the JSE Limited. The Group offers products and services across personal and business banking, credit cards, corporate and investment banking, wealth and investment management and insurance in chosen countries in Africa.

In June Barclays partnered with bitcoin wallet Safello to collaborate on bitcoin donations. The accelerator is co-organised by Barclays Africa with Tech Lab Africa programme. The first Bitcoin Academy was opened in Cape Town in August 2015 by Sonya Kuhnel, who also collaborated on the BitHub launch together with Cape Innovation and Technology Initiative. The first Bitcoin Africa conference was held in Cape Town in April and the second conference is to take place in Johannesburg in March 2016.