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Monday, January 15, 2018

Microsoft Accelerator India Partners with Accenture Ventures for ThinkNext 2018


As the 11th cohort of Microsoft acceleration programme marked its graduation on the semi-annual conclave ThinkNext 2018, Microsoft Accelerator announced its partnership with Accenture Ventures.

The two companies will help growth-stage technology B2B startups boost their enterprise readiness and go-to-market strategy, and also assist them in achieving scale in national and international markets.

Speaking on the ecosystem partnership, Bala Girisaballa, MD, Microsoft Accelerator, said, “Startups are the centres of innovation, and over the past decade they have played a crucial role in disrupting many industries worldwide. Today, the need is to create a collaborative environment and bring startups and corporates together to co-create and co-innovate. Our partnership with Accenture showcases our commitment to connect start-ups with large corporates and help them scale up to become successful businesses.”

The partnership aims to strengthen the startup ecosystem further. On ThinkNext 2016, Microsoft Accelerator had announced a similar partnership with another IT giant TCS. Unlike the previous partnership, the latest partnership announcement with Accenture Ventures will be more engaging, as both the companies share a common goal in this regard, said Bala. Technology and innovative solutions and scalability are two important parameters that both companies share, as part of the common goal.

Under the partnership, Accenture Ventures will help in shortlisting startups for the Microsoft accelerator programme through referrals. Accenture will also provide mentorship to the startups and will actively participate in ThinkNext 2018.

Commenting on the ecosystem partnership, Avnish Sabharwal, MD, Accenture Ventures, India, said, “At Accenture Ventures, we believe that an open innovation approach can help enterprises accelerate adoption of ‘The New’, underpinned by innovation and digital. This ecosystem partnership is an example of how we orchestrate the innovation ecosystem and create opportunities for start-ups to grow and scale-up. We are excited about the unique value that Accenture Ventures and Microsoft Accelerator can together create for start-ups and enterprises.”

Leading the acceleration programmes of India’s startup ecosystem, Microsoft accelerator has so far incubated 130 startups in India, and over 750 startups worldwide.

As Microsoft accelerator programme and Accenture Ventures are active in many other countries including Israel, and the UK, the US. The partnership if successful can be implemented in other countries where both share a similar chemistry with common goals, hinted Avnish.

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