Elevator Lab

Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria)

Elevator Lab is a fintech and startup partnership program powered by Raiffeisen Bank International (RBI) that effectively helps the best entrepreneurs to develop and scale their startups. By organizing the biggest corporate fintech program in CEE, the bank seeks the best among the fintech startups and aims to develop long-term collaboration with them for the third consecutive year.

For a second consecutive year the program also includes a Local Challenge in Bulgaria. What is new this year is the Elevator Lab Bootcamp for teams with a good idea or startups in an early seed stage. This approach allows startups and teams in various stages to join the competition Elevator Lab 2019.

The application period for 2019 is over.


By applying for Elevator Lab Challenge you receive feedback from experts from the bank, guidelines for improvement of your project or product, as well as opportunity to become one of the five finalists of the Elevator Lab Local Challenge. The winner participates in the global Elevator Lab program competing with startups from all over the world!

We are looking for startups with proven innovative products and technologies. Elevator Lab Challenge in Bulgaria is part of the global fintech partnership program of Raiffeisen Bank International. Your participation in the local program is the step towards scaling your business on an international level.

  • For the winner

    • WILD CARD for the of RBI Group’s partnership program Elevator Lab Semi-final (video pitch)
    • Trip to Vienna including training for the last selection round (after video pitch approval)
    • Opportunity to integrate the innovation with the Raiffeisen Group’s banking systems and reach all 16.1 million clients
  • For the finalists

    • Increasing of the brand awareness by mentioning in digital and print articles and Raiffeisenbank’s social media channels
    • Meeting with high-level managers from the bank and other innovative companies


By applying for the Elevator Lab Bootcamp your team or startup in an early seed stage gets the opportunity for trainings in Lean startup methodologies and the winning team goes to Vienna for a two week training program. Your idea will be validated and you our mentors and partners will provide you with feedback.

We are looking for teams and startups in an early seed stage that have a clear understanding of how their solution fits in the present ecosystem. You must be ready to present and improve your solution on the go.

  • For the winner

    • Two weeks (15th – 26th of July) Innovation Summer School training in Vienna with a focus on coding, data, design, marketing, and business. Afternoon and evening activities include summer cinema, biking tour, concerts, parties and museum tour.
    • Networking opportunities
  • For the finalists

    • Training by a highly qualified mentor during the Elevator Lab Bootcamp Final on the 3rd of July at Sofia Tech Park
    • Meeting with high-level managers from the bank and other innovative companies
    • Feedback regarding the market potential of your solution
    • Access to the Elevator Lab Local Challenge Final


The topics for the Elevator Lab Local Challenge and the Elevator Lab Bootcamp Bulgaria are:

  • Advanced Analytics & Artificial Intelligence

    • Voice banking, voice assistants and voice biometry for CEE languages
    • Intelligent character recognition/ smart document processing beyond OCR
    • Biometry e.g. behavior/ gesture analytics
    • Omnichannel analytics/ digital marketing
    • Citizen data science tools

  • RegTech

    • Regulatory compliance
    • KYC process support & KYC depository (e.g. OCR/ RPA/ AI/ text mining)
    • Strong customer authentication solutions & digital ID
    • Transaction monitoring/ supervision
    • Recognition & quantification of compliance/ operational risks
    • Product approval tools

  • Large Corporates & Institutional Clients

    • Digital platform solutions (especially digital onboarding, workflow tools, risk limit management)
    • Blockchain solutions for large corporates
    • Digital contract management
    • Treasury management solutions
    • Data analytics for corporate payments/ trade finance activities
    • Predictive Sales Signal Analytics

  • Payments & Transaction Processing for Mobility Serv.

    • Blockchain based micro payment transactions
    • Multimodal (public transport) payment services
    • In Car payments for mobility services

  • Retail Banking

    • Financial advisory solutions incl. investment
    • Beyond bank advisory
    • Hybrid advisory (e.g. customer service)
    • Social banking

  • SME Banking

    • Digital SME & freelancer banking
    • Financial advisory for SMEs
    • Value added services for SMEs (e.g. payroll services, automated accounting, invoicing & expense management, cash flow tools)

  • Cyber Security

    • Third party risk management
    • Insider threat recognition
    • Blockchain use cases for cyber security
    • Zero trust/ dynamic perimeter

  • FX Solutions

    • Automated FX hedging solutions for small amounts
    • Automated FX Advisory
    • Multi currency account infrastructure/ e-wallets
    • Real time payments
    • Digital & Fast Account Opening for FX Spot & Hedging


Register your start-up until the 21st of June 2019. After that there is an internal selection process in order to identify the top 5 most promising start-ups that will participate in the Elevator Lab Challenge. The finalists will be contacted no later than the 25th of June 2019. During the winner ceremony on the 3rd of July 2019, the top 5 will present their use cases in front of the jury members and one winner will be selected.


Apr 15

15 April 2019

» Application Phase Start

Jun 21

21 June 2019

» Application Phase End

Jun 25

25 June 2019

» Top 5 Start-ups Announcement

Jul 03

3 July 2019

» Local Winner Ceremony


The five finalists will be rated by a jury consisting of Board Members and managers from Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria.

  • Oliver Roegl
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria

  • Dobromir Dobrev
    Deputy Chairman of the Management Board, Corporate Banking
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria

  • Ani Angelova
    Member of the Management Board, Retail Banking
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria

  • Nedialko Mihailov
    Member of the Management Board, Operations & IT
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria

  • Martin Pytlik
    Member of the Management Board, Risk and Financial Management
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria

  • Borislava Deneva
    Head of Communications
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria

  • Daniel Dzholev
    Head of Digital Business, Retail Banking
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria

  • Kiril Yanchev
    Head of Corporate Products and Business Development
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria

  • Stefan Ivanov
    Head of Finance
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria

  • Valentin Milanov
    Head of IT
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria

  • Daniel Aleksiev
    Head of Digital Banking and Innovations
    Raiffeisenbank Bulgaria


The partners of Elevator Lab Challenge Bulgaria will participate in a presentation panel and a mentors‘ discussion during the final ceremony. They will share their experience in the field of innovations and deliver unique insights on how to successfully develop a startup.

  • Kalin Dimtchev
    Country Manager
    Microsoft Bulgaria

  • Georgi Zahariev
    Project Manager
    Google „Digital Garage“ Bulgaria

  • Atanas Raykov
    Senior Director Business Development
    EEMENA at Viber

  • Nikola Yanev
    Marketing Manager

  • Anton Gerunov
    Chief Operating Officer

  • George Dimitrov
    Board Member

ABOUT Raiffeisenbank (Bulgaria)