Cohort programme evokes good response

Innovation society partners with FICCI and University of Texas

Published - June 19, 2019 11:47 pm IST - VISAKHAPATNAM

Team members at the kick-starting of the second phase of the global incubation and acceleration programme by XLR8AP at Sunrise Incubation Hub in Visakhapatnam.

Team members at the kick-starting of the second phase of the global incubation and acceleration programme by XLR8AP at Sunrise Incubation Hub in Visakhapatnam.

The second phase of the global accelerator and incubator programme launched by the AP Innovation Society in the city has evoked a good response from startups of Andhra Pradesh in general and north Andhra in particular.

The cohort programme involves a rigorous scrutiny process. The project, named XLr8AP, is being implemented by APIS in collaboration with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and IC2 Institute of University of Texas at Austin.

Incidentally, this is the first cohort programme launched at the Sunrise Incubation Tower at IT Special Economic Zone, Madhurawada on Tuesday after XLr8AP was shifted from Tirupati to Visakhapatnam last year.

“We are very excited for getting expert handholding and mentorship through this initiative. In fact, it’s a dream come true for someone hailing from backward Srikakulam district,” Chaduvula Prasanth, who through the startup HelloTeen, aims to develop a real-time location-based app for benefiting B2C and B2B meetings and transforming villages into smart ones.

“The overall response is phenomenal. The encouraging factor this time is the selection of large number of teams from A.P., including many from north Andhra,” APIS CEO Winny Patro told The Hindu on Wednesday. XLr8AP has now the advantage of a world-class industrial ecosystem after its relocation to Visakhapatnam. Multi-faceted initiative

It is is a multi-faceted initiative which includes training, advanced capacity building for innovators and entrepreneurs, incubation and acceleration of tech companies into the global marketplace, mobilisation of venture capital and access to the extensive global commercial development networks of both FICCI and IC2.

It also gives startups direct exposure to the entrepreneurial culture of Austin, Texas through co-location in Austin to select qualifying companies who are looking to take their technology to the global marketplace.

In the first phase, (four cohorts), XLr8AP trained 132 startups. With the help of XLr8AP these firms were successful in creating over 1,000 new jobs and paid internships, allowing next-generation entrepreneurs to learn the process of high-impact by working with others to learn about societal and business challenges through innovation. In the process, they have produced over $3.4 million in incremental revenue with over 200 commercial deals currently in various stages of development. In all, 15 startups were selected for the cohort programme.

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