Fintech Challenge FAQ

Where will the Formathon take place?

Given the current Covid-19 situation, all workshops and sessions will be held online on Zoom.


I want to sign up with my friends to form a team, is it possible?

Yes, though you will still need to register individually. Please note teams should be no bigger than 3-5 members. We also encourage that the team has a diversity of skill-sets.

If you are less than 4 and would like to add someone to your team, that’s possible too! We’ll hold some team formation sessions to help you with this. 


If I don’t have a team can I still register?

Absolutely, the aim of the Formathon is to bring together individuals who share similar interests, who have the same objectives and who can work together to help progress the fintech ecosystem.

The Formathon begins with a team formation session where we match individuals with diverse skill sets but similar objectives together.


I don’t have a finance or tech background, can I still register?

Yes, definitely! We aim to have multi-disciplinary teams. So we encourage people from all backgrounds to apply. 


I am not familiar with Fintech, can I still register?

Yes! We are looking for participants who want to change the world, who are excited about the challenges, motivated to build products and/or get entrepreneurial experience.

In the context of COVID19 – we are looking for people who want to be part of the innovation wave that will help all Canadians.


What do I need to bring to the sessions?

Given the sessions will be online – it’s still important to be prepared! We encourage you to connect on your computer that has audio/video capability, have a notebook and pen. Anything that will properly help you to brainstorm with your team. 


Will the program be in French or English?

Our sessions will primarily be given in English, however please note that all materials (presentations, reading documents etc.) will be provided in English and French. We will have animators for every challenge as well who will be bilingual. Given that our program is open to Canada, our workshops will be in english but of course any questions can be asked/answered in French.


What kind of time commitment is required?

We’ve built our sessions to be flexible around busy schedules though you will be required to attend all sessions during the Formathon (or at least 2 people per team should be represented at every session). We’ll have a total of 5 sessions, 1 final presentation and 2 optional sessions: Saturdays: 10am-3pm (May 30th, June 6th and June 13th), 2 Wednesday evenings: 5:30pm-7pm (June 3rd and June 10th) and the Finals 5:30pm-7pm (June 17th). 

If you’re in the startup track and your team wins at the Finals for your challenge, you will transition into the Formathon Select, which will consist of bi-weekly 30 minute meetings for check-ins.


I have experience and would like to be an expert or support the teams, how do I help?

If you have experience and knowledge in tech (AI, Blockchain, VR, etc) or in the industry (Banking, Payments, Services, Data, etc) we’d love to (virtually) meet you! Kindly email us to [email protected].


I’m interested in both tracks or more than 1 challenge, how do I decide?

During our kickoff on May 28th, you will get more information about the tracks and challenges. Pending this and team formation you can discover which track and challenge interests you more. We ask that by the end of the 2nd session (Saturday May 30th) you’ve decided which track and challenge you’d like to formally compete in.


Research Track – what is it?

In the research track, we present challenges where mandators are looking for further research and innovative solutions to their challenges – think of it like a case competition! All work done for a research track challenge will belong to the mandator who presented this challenge.


Startup Track – what is it?

In the startup track, we present challenges where we’re looking for solutions – in the hopes that you can create a team and a startup down the line! All work done for a startup track challenge will belong to you.


Covid-19 Challenges – what are they?

In collaboration with the City of Montreal, we have selected 5 fintech startups from our community to present a challenge that has arisen due to Covid-19. These challenges are based on a product pivot they’ve had to do in order to survive the crises and are looking for fresh solutions or research on how they can survive the crisis in the short term. Winning teams will win $1K per team member and 1 team member will have the opportunity to win a part-time paid 9 week-summer internship with the startup. 


What is the Formathon Select?

The Formathon Select is a supportive program that starts at the end of the Formathon competition, and continues for 9-weeks. The aim is to provide you with industry guidance as you build your startup. 

Sessions will consist of bi-weekly 30 minute meetings for check-ins with industry experts, and should culminate in a completed Proof-of-Concept.


What are the final prizes?

The prizes depend on the challenge you have selected, but there are more than $20,000 cash prizes, the opportunity to win a 3 month internship, as well as other great prizes. More to be announced soon!


When is the deadline to register?

The deadline to register is May 28th.


What if I would like to add an additional member to my team after it is formed.

The goal for the competition is to give you the best chance to build a solution or further research in the sector. If a new team member would support this, we would be happy to discuss to ensure it falls within the rules.


Can we be a mix of students and non-students?

Absolutely – there is no rule preventing a mix of professional and academic backgrounds. In fact the more diverse the team is (background and experience), the stronger the team.


How are participants selected for Formathon?

There is no selection process. The Formathon is open to all.


Is the Formathon only for participants in Montreal?

The Formathon is a cross Canadian program and any participant can participate as long as you can make it to our sessions and present at the finals.