NetApp announced the sixth cohort of startups chosen for the NetApp Excellerator, the company’s flagship startup accelerator program. In its first-ever virtual launch, the final group of six start-ups were chosen based on their alignment with data-driven technologies – all done through an online selection process.
The award-winning NetApp Excellerator program has mentored 29 B2B tech startups through five cohorts in the last three years, resulting in successful exits and investments for its alumni.
The selected six B2B technology startups for the sixth cohort are: Aikaan Labs, Cyborgintell, IQLECT, Koinearth, Kubesafe, and Myelin Foundry. In line with NetApp technology focus, these startups have developed innovative solutions using Artificial Intelligence. They are employing AI in various ways, some of which are: IoT at the edge, predictive analysis, Blockchain technology, and cloud-native application protection using Kubernetes. The startups offer solutions across spotlight sectors such as healthcare, BFSI, retail, IT, and e-commerce.
Commenting on the virtual launch and impact value of the program, Madhurima Agarwal, leader, NetApp Excellerator, said, “Startups will play a crucial role in the nation’s economic growth as we emerge from this pandemic. Despite the constraints, we have selected our cohort over online sessions and held introduction meetings virtually without any disruptions.
The transition to remote learning and working is strengthening our community as everyone doubles down on their efforts to succeed. Mentorship sessions and industry connects, too, will be held remotely for the duration of the crisis. We continue our focus on giving the startups best-in-class training, access to venture capitalists and a real opportunity to make a difference in their businesses.”
Since its inception, the accelerator program has been disrupting the start-up ecosystem to drive growth amongst B2B start-ups in the niche data-driven market led by AI, ML, IoT and advanced tech. These startups stand to benefit from the paid proof-of-concept (POC) model that NetApp has been offering since Cohort-5.
Emphasizing the NetApp Excellerator program’s value-add to the B2B technology scene, Ravi Chhabria, managing director, NetApp India said, “We leverage our global reach, technology expertise and industry connections to catalyze success for these startups. We help them fine-tune their technology focus, build working proof-of-concepts with us, and re-model their go-to-market strategy. The innovation spurred by this program will empower these startups to present pathbreaking solutions to customers, empowering them to change the world with data. We are committed to promoting entrepreneurship and driving positive economic outcomes for our ecosystem.”
In the next four months, the Cohort-6 startups stand to gain learning experiences from business and technology mentoring sessions and access to NetApp cloud-oriented data technologies. In addition, the start-ups will be given networking opportunities with potential investors, partners, and customers. NetApp will sponsor a paid POC or offer an equity-free grant of $15,000 to the graduating start-ups.
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Vishal Chawla is a senior tech journalist at Analytics India Magazine and writes about AI, data analytics, cybersecurity, cloud computing, and blockchain. Vishal also hosts AIM's video podcast called Simulated Reality- featuring tech leaders, AI experts, and innovative startups of India.