The Microsoft Accelerator announced the graduation of its second India batch of technology startups, which is also its Summer Batch of 2013, today. At a Demo Day held at the Microsoft Lavelle Road office here, the 200 plus audience of mentors, industry bigwigs, venture capitalists, angel investors and media professionals witnessed the amazing progress made by each company over the last four months at the Microsoft Accelerator. The nine startups which graduated today are explara, deck, Harness, i7 Networks, iDOS, SupportBee, TableGrabber, Tuebora and Visarity.
Raman Roy, Chairman and Managing Director of Quatrro and co-founder of Indian Angel Network, was the Guest of Honor. Congratulating the startups, Roy said: “India today is a hotbed of startups. There has been a dramatic change in society’s outlook towards startups. Few years ago, a self-started business was the ‘face saving’ option for someone who didn’t manage to secure a job. He had no ideas, no strategy and no real interest in the business. Today, the employees and even fresh graduates are brimming with ideas of what can be created into a successful business; people are giving up lucrative job offers, successful executives are leaving high-paying jobs as the entrepreneurial bug bites them. They live, breath, eat, drink the business. There is so much energy! Entrepreneurship is the preferred avenue for smart people who dare to take risks and realize their dreams and, in doing so, provide employment to others.
While most of them have interesting ideas, at times their success is limited by a few critical factors—lack of mentorship, access to funds and the inability to build a strong business foundation. It’s great to see the initiatives the team at the Microsoft Accelerator has taken up to specifically address these key needs. I am extremely happy to be here today, and hope that some of these companies become global trendsetters and market leaders from India.
Congratulating the second batch, Mukund Mohan, CEO-in-residence, Microsoft Accelerator in India, said: “We are extremely happy with the progress this batch, which ranges in businesses from education, enterprise mobile security, customer support, event management and the hospitality industry, has made during the last four months at the Accelerator. We had handpicked them from 450+ applications. Basis our learnings from batch one, we made several improvements in our program, e. g. including more seed stage/angel investors as lead mentors, sharper focus on product definition and roadmap and stronger UX support. All these have helped this batch immensely as they prepared to take a significant leap into the global marketplace. In fact, one of them, Adepto, just got acquired!
The Microsoft Accelerator team is now busy shortlisting applications for the third batch, which will be the 2013 Winter batch. After rigorous screening, the final list of up to 15 startups will be announced in early July. The four-month incubation process at the state-of-the-art Microsoft office in downtown Bangalore will begin on July 15 and end with Demo Day on November 15 when the startups will showcase their ideas to key industry influentials and top angel investors and VCs.