New Delhi, India, Dec 09, 2015: Microsoft Ventures in India today announced partnerships with Citi India, Kyron and Patni Healthcare under its #CoInnovate program. #CoInnovate connects mature startups with corporates – who get access to innovative solutions for their business needs while providing greater market access for the startups. The announcement was made at Think Next 2015, Microsoft Ventures’ flagship forum that brings thought leaders in technology who are driving transformation via innovation together under a roof. Think Next aims to bring opportunities and possibilities together and explore potentialities for economic progress via global collaborations.
|#CoInnovate comprises three programs –
· Market Access Program (MAP) which connects corporates to startups in the business vertical where their interests lie.
· The High Potential program (Hi-Po) is where corporates nominate startups they want to work with to be accelerated at Microsoft Ventures in order to speed up their business potential.
· The Partner in Acceleration (PIA) program where Microsoft Ventures helps organizations set up their own accelerator / incubator program by sharing knowhow.
The #CoInnovate partnerships include:
Citi India: Citi India is a Hi-Po partner under #CoInnovate. Through this partnership, Citi is seeking to reach out to new technologies and solutions created by startups that can address its clients’ banking, e-commerce and transaction needs. Microsoft Ventures will also select startups from the Citi Mobile Challenge 2015 for its acceleration program to take their products to the next level through strategic and market interventions, mentorship, market access and access to Microsoft products.
Patni Healthcare: Currae from Patni Healthcare Enterprise has signed on to the MAP programs, were Microsoft Ventures will connect them to healthcare startups. This will result in Patni getting access to curated set of startups that they can work with as solution partners for Currae Hospitals. Microsoft Ventures will additionally help Currae identify and invest in appropriate startups and help them scale up their businesses.
Kyron: Microsoft Ventures will power Kyron’s corporate accelerator, by sharing best practices, and providing access to its portfolio of startups and events. This partnership will result in an expanded reach into the startup ecosystem for both Kyron and Microsoft by way of shared synergies. This will potentially result in Kyron’s startups getting exposed to a much larger market and its corporate partners getting access to a much larger pool of solutions developed by startups.
Bhaskar Pramanik, Chairman, Microsoft Corporation (India) Pvt. Ltd, said, “Support for innovators and entrepreneurs has always been part of Microsoft’s DNA. We have been in India for 25 years now, and worked with businesses and governments alike. Through the knowledge gained in these 25 years, we have emerged as trusted advisors to organizations of all sizes – be it a startup entrepreneur or a giant conglomerate. We believe that success for innovators will drive our own success and I am glad to note that we are taking another step in this direction today.”
Speaking on the occasion, Ravi Narayan, Director at Microsoft Ventures in India said, “Microsoft Ventures has always aimed to be an enabler for the startup ecosystem. During the last few years in India, we identified that market access remains one of the biggest stumbling blocks for startups, while corporates and governments often struggle to identify the right business partner. #CoInnovate is the bridge that can connect the two and we are happy that we have been able to bring such reputed partners on board today.”
Highlights from Think Next 2015
Think Next also saw the graduation of Microsoft Ventures’ Winter Batch 2015. The eight certified startups from the batch are – Canvasflip, Cloudcherry, Shotang, Flutura, KNOLSKAPE, Vymo, Vakilsearch and Vigyanlabs. The startups showcased their innovative solutions that have been the hallmark of all Microsoft Ventures’ batches till date. In addition, Think Next brought together more than 800 delegates from leading corporates, investors, thought leaders, and Microsoft leaders who partnered to push the collaborative innovation agenda for the ecosystem. The event also had two senior leaders from Microsoft’s Global Leadership engage with the audience. Steven Guggenheimer, Corporate Vice President & Chief Evangelist at Microsoft and Scott Coleman, General Manager, Microsoft Ventures shared lessons they learnt while working with entrepreneurs across the globe and how Indian could benefit from them.
One of the most sought after sessions was the Round Table on ‘The Road to Startup Exits’ hosted jointly by Microsoft Ventures and iSprit. The session focussed on hot topics including current valuation levels, potential IPOs, M&A scenarios in the age of Unicorns, Acqui-hire and mergers. Another interesting session was the Fireside Chat with renowned author Devdutt Pattanaik who spoke about the lessons today’s entrepreneurs can derive from our mythology and stories handed down over the generations.
About Microsoft India
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) Microsoft is the leading platform and productivity company for the mobile-first, cloud-first world, and its mission is to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more. Microsoft set up its India operations in 1990. Today, Microsoft entities in India have over 7,000 employees engaged in sales and marketing, research and development, and customer services and support across ten Indian cities – Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Gurgaon, Hyderabad, Kochi, Kolkata, Mumbai and Pune.
About Microsoft Ventures
Microsoft Ventures is a global initiative to help entrepreneurs build great companies. Working with late stage startups, the initiative provides the tools, resources, and expertise startups need to succeed. Visit Microsoft Ventures at www.microsoftventures.com to learn more about how Microsoft is helping the next generation of smart companies take flight.