Corporate incubators, initiatives that involve companies offering office space and early-stage investment to start-ups, are starting to dot the Indian start-up horizon as multi-nationals look to keep track of new trends and technologies.

Next year

The latest to join the list, which already includes companies such as Microsoft, is U.S retail giant Target. According to people with direct knowledge of the matter, Target is looking at launching a start-up accelerator in Bangalore next year.

The programme will mentor start-ups, and may provide them initial funding,

When contacted, a Target spokesperson confirmed the development but did not furnish details. “At Target, innovation is core to our culture and strategy, and we are always looking for new ideas to enhance the shopping experience of our guests. We are in discussions with a variety of partners and start-ups for a Target India Accelerator programme,” the spokesperson said in an e-mailed response. “We have not yet settled on which start-ups will be included and continue to seek ideas which have the potential to help transform the retail industry. We are excited about this opportunity, and look forward to sharing additional details once we launch the programme,” the spokesperson added.

Other companies such as Coca Cola, which usually don’t have a connection to the technology start-up scene, are also looking at harnessing the potential of the start-up scene in Bangalore, albeit in a much smaller fashion.

Enthusiastic

Software giant Microsoft has been the most enthusiastic corporate so far. It opened a start-up accelerator last year, and has already gone through a few batches. Another incubator was also opened by payments provider PayPal a few weeks ago, with the company providing office space and funding connections to start-ups.


  • The company is in discussion with

    partners and start-ups

  • Microsoft and PayPal have already

    started similar incubators