Attempts of major 8 IT companies for “Accelerator Program” which Google and Amazon are focusing on
An “Accelerator Program” is a program aimed at creating experiences in customers as its end goal. It does this by gathering ideas which can be premises for practical application or commercialization from the startups participating in the program, utilizing the support of the host who provides their know-how, networks, human resources, as well as the technologies which have been developed by the startups on their own or by that of any other startups who seems to be promising.
In recent years, companies and institutes in a wide range of industries have engaged in supporting developments of startup and promotion of their technological innovations through the Accelerator Program. Here are just some of the the Accelerator Programs started by some of the largest international IT companies like Google, Amazon, Facebook and Microsoft.
“Google Launchpad Accelerator” – Intensive training in Google Headquarters in Silicon Valley
“Launchpad Accelerator” is an intensive 6 month program that trains startups which are growing rapidly, with support of Google’s human resources, networks and state of the art technology.
The program is started with the initial intensive training for 2 weeks under the guidance of mentors who exclusively belong to Google’s Headquarters in Silicon Valley, and then the participants carry out the program so ideas gathered from the other startups can be practical. Not only is every single support provided for free, all the costs are also borne by Google. It is a good opportunity to meet up with investors and mentors who support startups in their growth period as well as to widen the appeal of startups among the general public.
At present, the portfolio includes startups from Europe (Czech, Hungary, Estonia, Romania, etc.), Asia (India, Malaysia, Philippines, etc.), Central & South America (Argentine, Brazil, Columbia, etc.) and Africa (Egypt, Kenya, Tunisia, etc.) although the regions are still limited.
The graduates of the program are based around the world, like Curofy which is associated with numbers of physicians more than 200,000 from India, Honesty Apps which serves some applications for DIY from Philippines and PublishDrive which is a platform to publish e-books in response to SaaS from Hungary. Curofy gained totally $1.65million in two rounds of the funding in 2014 and 2015. The application for the program can be applied in the site as below.
“Alexa Accelerator” is what Amazon operates in partnership with Techstars, a top accelerator from US. This is a project of venture capital fund “Alexa Fund” to invest up to $100million for any innovative technologies which can contribute improvement to any technologies for Alexa related merchandise and/or its service.
In the program which closed its application on April, 2017 and is carried out for 13 weeks, 9 companies including Play Impossible (a startup which has fused a specialized ball into the sports applications in Pennsylvania), Comet (a startup for mechanical learning in New York) and Pulse Labs (which develops voice & sound applications), presented their achievements on the demonstration day.
Do check the site from time to time if you are interested in the program because any information for the next application has not been released yet.
“Facebook Marketing API Accelerator” ―― Apply to either suitable one from 2 programs along applicants’ experiences and capabilities
This is an international accelerator program to develop API for marketing in Facebook. It is attractive even for anyone who has no experience with API development in marketing if the applicants have fresh and practical ideas,
2 programs, “Dabble” for beginner and “Grow” for who has had some experiences are available so that the applicants can decide to choose the either one which is more suitable for their experiences and capability for the application. In the Dabble course, participants not only receive support from the internal engineers and training managers but also participation opportunities from community support groups and Q&A sessions, and all expenditure for advertisement is fully provided for.
In Grow course, participants receive one-to-one direct support from the engineers and training managers, as well as strategic business advice, lots of advertisement expenditure and access to the beta versions are provided as well.
Until today, the participants have included Koddi which is a startup to operate metasearch management services to digital markets in Texas and Social Fulcrum which is a digital marketing startup in Massachusetts.
“Microsoft Accelerator” ―― Support startups in every developing stage
“From idea to IPO”, this is a program to support startups in every developing stage, and has prompted growth of the startups through Microsoft’s varieties of software, development tools, “BizSpark” which enables the startups to be available for cloud services valued at up to $120K, provided by Azure and venture fund “Microsoft Ventures”.
It has supported the growth of startups totaling 48 companies to date. These include, 1mdata.com which engages medical data in Beijing, and AllizHealth which does platforms for health analysis in Maharashtra, India. Additional investment to the each startup is about $5.2million on average. 1mdata.com raised a total of $15million from West Capital Management with its Series A and B rounds in 2016 to 2017.
Adept went public from 2003 through to 2015. However, since then, it was acquired by OmRon. AllizHealth raised funds of $350K in total from Mumbai Angels in 2013 and 2016.
Application can be accepted anytime.
“IBM Alpha Zone Accelerator” ―― Program for 20 weeks from Israel
This is an accelerator program for startups who have successfully raised post-seed or Series A funding. It is offered to startups who have made new inroads in the areas of healthcare, retail, transport energy, telecommunication and media through the use of technologies like cloud service, big data analysis, mobile communication, IoT (internet of things), Cognitive computing or machine learning and IT solutions based on AI.
While its programme is relatively longer at 20 weeks, it offers support and/or consulting from mentors, technicians and specialists with the provision of cloud service worth up to $120K, and free space in IBM’s Israeli office. On demonstration day, at the close of the program, the participants are given opportunities to present the capabilities they have developed in the program in front of IBM’s executives, angel investors, venture capitalists and the media. That is an ideal opportunity or environment for startups to demonstrate their capability on an international stage.
Members of the inaugural class (Jan. 2014 to Jan. 2015) include Biop Medical which engages state of the art medical technologies in Israel, Optibus which does SaaS platform for transportation in Tel Aviv and Salead which does B2B networking platform. Currently, the programme is looking for candidates for its 7th programme.
“CISCO Launchpad” ―― Innovation initiative beyond framework of accelerator
This aims at developing end-to-end type digital solutions in India linking CISCO’s technology, startups and partners communities. According to CISCO Launchpad startups who participate in the program will have the opportunity to participate in an “innovation initiative that supports and nurtures co-development, co-creation, new business models and joint GTM” strategies, which goess beyond the usual framework of accelerator programmes.
Specifically, it offers access to business and/or technology mentorship, investors, customers, partnered companies and co-working spaces.
Members of the third class (Nov. 2017 to Aug. 2018) include AgriTech which engages businesses based on cloud, Flux Gen which provides platforms in Wisconsin, USA, Tala Security which engages IoT device security and ZIROH Labs which develops cryptographic systems for privacy. The current programme is ongoing, so no applications are being accepted now.
“Oracle Startup Cloud Accelerator” ―― Tailor-made type considering individuality per each startups
This is a tailor-made type program which considers the individuality of each participant. The basic composition is enriched including international level mentoring or advice, work space in cloud environment, knowhow provision, access to customers/investors and partners.
It is a relatively new program started since Jan. 2017, but 5 companies already appeared as the first graduates including Dressire which builds solutions based on AI analysis in Bangalore, and Stat Analytics which does platform for analyzing credit risk. It plans to support 5 startups per program from now on.
Oracle runs the program in various locations like Bangalore, Delhi and Singapore in Asia, to Paris and Bristol in Europe, and Sao Paulo in South America. Oracle aims to expand it further to North America, Middle East and Africa in future.
Its application has closed already, but it has announced that the next round may be updated in its site sometime soon.
“Accenture Accelerator” ―― Hold accelerator program for students, too
This is a program focusing on startups in Northern Europe, with the aim of forming innovative services, merchandise concepts and business models in association with partners in Finland. The participating startups will be supported by specialists of Accenture, its partners Avant Ventures and external mentors.
Accenture held its Boot camp in the program during Oct. to Nov. 2017 in Helsinki. Among the 7 finalists of “Splash 2017” which was the largest level event in the world for international entrepreneurs, startups and investors, Noiseless Acoustics which develops products like intelligent gas leakage sensor was elected as the winner.
Currently, the programme is looking for participants who are students. These participants will be furnished with the knowledge and experiences through opportunities in collaboration with startups and Accenture. The closing date for the application is September 24 (by Kotoko Allen, free-lance writer, living in UK)