NetApp, a global cloud-led, data-centric software company launched Cohort 12 of its flagship startup accelerator program – NetApp Excellerator. Capitalising on the significance of data as a key driver of business growth, Cohort 12 will see participation from five startups that are developing innovative solutions across data management and artificial intelligence domains.
The cohort brings forth five deep tech startups- NEMA AI, Zeron, Chaos Genius, Kensu, and Blockfenders. They have been selected for their proclivity towards data, including high-potential domains such as data exchange, cloud cost optimisation, and cybersecurity. Placing the spotlight on the global essence of the NetApp Excellerator program, three of these ventures have a presence in the US market, in addition to having India operations.
NEMA AI is a neuroscience and AI-based consumer insights platform that uses brain scan technology. The startup leverages this to personalise and optimise learning, branding, and marketing strategies with a focus on making learning better for children. Kensu is a no-code AI data observability platform that helps businesses detect, diagnose, and remediate data quality issues, and is currently exploring a Proof of Concept (PoC) around its business model.
NetApp Excellerator’s Cohort 12 has emerged as a strong launchpad for women entrepreneurship with NEMA AI, Chaos Genius, Zeron, and Kensu being led by women. Over the course of the cohort, they will be mentored under NetApp ExcellerateHER – a dedicated initiative that supports women-led startups operating in the deep tech space. Since the launch of the initiative in 2020, NetApp has seen a steady rise in women-led startups, which now make up 38% of all participating startups.
Through NetApp Excellerator, startups can enjoy access to resources, mentors, and industry experts across geographies to help them gain maximum exposure and knowledge. Over the last seven years, NetApp has mentored a total of 77 startups out of which 28 are global startups and 17 women-led startups.
Speaking on the launch of NetApp Excellerator Cohort 12, Ravi Chhabria, Managing Director, NetApp India, said, ” This cohort marks an exceptional change in tide with four out of the five businesses being led by women. We also have many focusing on data-driven solution offerings. We take pride in seeing the NetApp Excellerator program grow and look forward to catalysing growth and helping participants thrive in the deep-tech ecosystem.”
Adapting to the ever-evolving dynamics of the technology sector, the NetApp Excellerator program has continuously advanced. United by a common vision, the collaboration between NetApp’s mentors, leaders, and startups have catalysed substantial advancements within the realm of deep tech. Their success can be seen through alumni who have gone on to raise over $350 Mn collectively, including five startups who raised over $160 Mn last year alone.
The NetApp Excellerator Program, which was launched in 2017, has been recognised as one of the top five accelerator programs in India for corporate innovation by NexTT Awards. It includes a PoC model that allows entrepreneurs to demonstrate the effectiveness of their solutions in the real world. In collaboration with NetApp, the startups refine their minimum viable products (MVPs) and identify new use cases. This information is then used to develop their go-to-market strategies.