Lightspeed India Partners, in an attempt to boost entrepreneurship, has been working on Extreme Entrepreneurs — an entrepreneurial training series aimed at connecting select Indian startups with the top guns in global technology and entrepreneurship.
After successfully supporting eight startups last year, the firm has shortlisted 10 startups for Extreme Entrepreneurs 2019. The firm received more than 870 startup applications, a 90% increase over the first year, from across 102 cities.
“No terms, no contracts, but a 100% pure community initiative,” is how Lightspeed describes Extreme Entrepreneurs. Vaibhav Agrawal, a partner at Lightspeed India Partners, told Inc42 earlier that the Extreme Entrepreneurs programme aims to create a level playing field for founders who may not otherwise have access to great mentorship and resources.
The selected startups get a chance to get candid Masterclasses by some of the most iconic global startup leaders. Lightspeed India has roped in business leaders such as Max Levchin, cofounder and CEO of Affirm, previously cofounder PayPal; Anu Hariharan, partner, Y Combinator; Ritesh Agarwal, CEO and founder, OYO rooms; and Sriharsha Majety, CEO and cofounder, Swiggy among others.
Further, the selected startups will receive 1:1 mentorship by a Lightspeed Partner every week. The business training series will run for six “Testy Tuesdays” starting September 3.
Vaibhav Agrawal, partner at Lightspeed said, “We were amazed by the founders we met – a small towner from Bihar who lived through college under $2/day, a founder who started a college coding competition that attracted 20K+ developers, and someone who rose from a debilitating sports injury to run a half marathon. I am quite hopeful that these few weeks will ignite new ideas, pull founders out of the day-to-day and shift their trajectory completely.”
Here Are The Selected 10 Startups
- Blackboard Radio: Delhi-based AI-powered personalised spoken English coach Blackboard Radio was founded by Vatsal Dusad, Shubham Gupta and Arpit Jain. It is a platform to improve conversational English of school students in tier 2 and 3 India.
- Bakbuck: Founded in August 2018 by Abhinay Jain, Shashank Kakrecha and Rohit Naidu, Mumbai-based BakBuck is a social gaming network and assisted shopping for Indian housewives in regional languages
- Deepsync: Bengaluru-based AI startup Deepsync was founded by Ishan Sharma and Rishikesh in 2018. The company is using voice cloning technology that improves audio experiences by 10xing production process
- EazyPG: Founded in 2017 by Srijan Raj, Nimit Jain and Manish Kumar, EazyPG App automates tenant verification, complaints & rent collection for hostel and PG operators. With its AI-powered mobile app, a voice-controlled personal assistant for owners and a shared personal manager, EazyPG is enabling less tech-savvy local owners to manage, grow and retain their customers.
- Gratitude: Mumbai-based Gratitude was founded by Shashi Kumar and Pritesh Sankhe in 2018. Gratitude offers everyday self-help tools and meditation exercises to be more grateful and mindful
- GroMo: Gurugram-based GroMo was founded in 2019 by Ankit Khandelwal, Darpan Khurana, and Arpit Khandelwal. GroMo is a platform for micro-entrepreneurs to sell financial products within their network and earn income
- Ithaka: Founded in 2017 by Rahul Singh, Mithilesh Said and Durgesh Nandan, Ithaka is a travel social commerce and trip planning platform for DIY travellers. Currently serving people traveling to Thailand, Indonesia and Turkey, Ithaka helps travelers right from choosing locations, making itineraries, curating experiences and figure out the entire hassle of transport, routes and bookings.
- Openapp: Founded by Gotama Gowda, Rajshekar Jenne, and Siddhesh Keluskar, Openapp is a new-age security and surveillance startup that uses IoT and AI to provide affordable, accessible & convenient security solutions.
- Womaniya: Mumbai-based Womaniya is a community of Indian women in Hindi to share daily lives and get support. It was founded by Siddharth Kothari, Lakhan Suchdev, Kanak Waikar, and Avneesh Kumar in 2018.
- Xeno: Founded in 2018 by Pranav Ahuja and Ayushmaan Kapoor, Xeno is an AI-driven retention marketing platform for large retailers to increase repeat sales by up to 50%. Xeno helps B2C brands run 1 to 1 marketing campaigns at scale to their existing customers.