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Gurugram-based India Accelerator has invested $150K in six startups, shortlisted for its first batch. Following are the startups shortlisted for the accelerator programme: Kuants, a fintech startup; a Ukrainian startup working on AI-backed sign language-to-speech converter called EValk; lifestyle products rental platform Voko; AI backed gift-recommendation platform Wish-a-Mitr; inter-city cab platform CabBazar and an ecommerce platform Square1.

Founded by Ashish Bhatia and Abhay Chawla, earlier this year, India Accelerator is also a member of Global Accelerator Network (GAN), a consortium of 85+ leading accelerators in the world including SparkLabs in South Korea and Techstars in the US.

The six startups will benefit from India Accelerator’s ‘Co work’, ‘Co Live’ and Startup Academy during the course of their three-month long acceleration programme. While India Accelerator has funded $20-25K in each of the startups, the investment round called Angel Day saw participation from other selected investors and angels too.

Mona Singh, Chief Acceleration Officer, India Accelerator said, “While there are many players in the industry who provide funding as the primary offering, we would like to create a more meaningful difference. Post the seed funding, IA would step into handhold these selected startups through the three-month (+ nine months), intensive mentorship-driven program, and channelize the seed investment to get the bang for the buck for the investor.”

Spanning over two days, the Angel Day was held at the premises of India Accelerator, providing opportunities for networking and meaningful conversations. Of the 150+ applications received from across the globe, the final 15 shortlisted startups participated in the event to showcase their technology and product. There was a 10-minute slot provided to each startup to make their elevator pitch, post which a series of long, serious meetings with relevant investors were set up for further grilling.

Meet The Six Shortlisted Startups Of India Accelerator’s First Cohort

Voko: Founded by Bhuvnesh Sharma and Harsh Vardhan in 2017, Voko is an online rental platform that provides a convenient and affordable way to get lifestyle (consumer) goods for rent. Currently operational in NCR, Voko works on aggregator based asset-light model, providing cameras, adventure gear, home appliances and furniture. The startup aims to provide a better alternative i.e. accessibility of lifestyle goods over ownership to young professionals who keep relocating to new places frequently.

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Square 1: Square 1 is the launchpad for e-commerce projects. It can be looked as ‘Magento on steroids’, a next generation, modern, generic, comprehensive platform built on latest technology stack. The open source framework provides merchants with a flexible shopping cart system, and control over the look, content and functionality of their online store.

Kuants: Founded by Ayush Gangwar in 2016, Kuants is an algorithmic trading platform that reduces bottlenecks associated with the popularity of algo trading among the masses by making it a more streamlined process.

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WAM (Wish-a-Mitr): Wish-a-Mitra (WAM) is an innovative platform that aims to create a gifting experience that makes sense. The response-based engine provides tailored recommendations to guests so that they can buy gifts which are more relevant and useful to the hosts.

Evalk ASL: Founded by Roman Wyhowski in 2017, the Ukraine-based Evalk provides solutions to deaf people to communicate with anyone else by translating (ASL) to speech. It involves building video recognition technology, based on recurrent convolutional neural networks – for translating video (of ASL speaker) into text. The final product will be in the form of an app and will use the phone camera.

Cabbazar: This unique cab marketplace provides bidding facility to compare and book one-way, round-trip cabs from hundreds of travel agencies providing quotes for the same.

India Accelerator is the first Indian accelerator which is also a member of GAN. According to Ashish Bhatia, the membership will help access to global accelerators and best practices in the global ecosystem. It will also help the shortlisted startups showcase their products/ideas and raise funding on a global level.

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