Cloud data services provider NetApp has announced the graduation of its fifth cohort as part of its acceleration programme, NetApp Excellerator. The five technology startups, which graduated from the programme are CloudSEK, Senseforth.ai, Lightwing, Coralogix and Curl Analytics. Besides Coralogix which is an Israeli startup, registered in the US, rest four are Indian startups.
Started in 2017, NetApp Excellerator has so far mentored 29 B2B technology startups through five cohorts. The programme focusses on a sponsored proof-of-concept (PoC) model where startups have to prove the potential of their solutions in the real world. All five startups are engaged in PoCs with NetApp.
“The fifth cohort marked the launch of an evolved model where the startups built paid PoCs, which will give them stronger go-to-market opportunities and drive exponential growth. We too have made great strides since our first cohort. We’ve engaged deeply with 29 pioneering startups, including three who have had successful exits,” commented Madhurima Agarwal, leader, NetApp Excellerator.
NetApp Excellerator: Acceleration Programme
Responding to Inc42’s query on its investment model in graduating startups, Agarwal said, “Our programme is very different from other acceleration models, as we don’t take any equity in the startups. However, we do offer an equity-free grant of $15,000, or a NetApp-sponsored POC. As of now, we have decoupled our investment arm from the program.”
NetApp Excellerator is a mentorship-driven startup accelerator focused on creating an impact in the startup ecosystem through association with a small, yet unique set of data-driven B2B tech startups. The NetApp team, in collaboration with industry-renowned external mentors, coaches the startups on cutting-edge technologies, platforms, tools and business acumen. The participating startups get access to investors and NetApp’s customer portfolio. They also receive an equity-free grant of $15,000, or a NetApp-sponsored POC.
While shortlisting startups, Excellerator focusses broadly on three parameters.
- Data-driven models
- Global appeal
Out of 29 startups graduated so far from the Excellerator in the last 2.5 years, many of the startups have been acquired by other companies. For instance, last year, Adya (first cohort), was acquired by Qualys, a leading provider of cloud-based security and compliance solutions. Similarly, ArchSaber, from the second cohort, and VitaCloud from the first cohort, have also had successful exits. Additionally, SigTuple, Anlyz, FirstHive and others have secured next round of funding.
Ravi Chhabria, managing director of NetApp India stated, “We started this program with our own unique outlook as a 27-year-old startup. We continue to innovate across our ecosystem and these young startups enable our customers to change their world with data. With our deep expertise in data management, we are uniquely positioned to help them navigate next-generation technologies to scale up their business.”