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Facebook expands startup program in India, announces new initiatives

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At the Facebook India Startup, the company reaffirmed its commitment to offer valuable and meaningful support to more entrepreneurs & startups through its key programs. The company is also nurturing the entrepreneurial spirit of students and is encouraging them to think about deep tech and product innovation. The first batch of School of Innovation program, of 10 student teams have built their VR ideas into working product prototypes which will showcase on a demo day, early next year. Besides these programs, 21,000 people have also completed self- training modules via Facebook’s Startup Training Hub, which was launched last year.

Further, the company has announced the following programs for India-

  • SheLeadsTech Roadshow: Facebook’s flagship program for women-led startups, SheLeadsTech will see more organized efforts in Tier II cities via SheLeadsTech Roadshow, a movement to inspire more women to think technology and entrepreneurship, and convert their ideas into startups. Through community efforts and encouragement, SheLeadsTech Roadshow will grow women networks to learn from other women about challenges and opportunities and take the leap to realize their entrepreneurial dreams. To begin with, SheLeadsTech Roadshow will travel to over 10 cities including Jaipur, Panjim, Kochi, Chandigarh, Ahmedabad, Coimbatore, Bhubaneswar, Guwahati, and Shillong. Currently, SheLeadsTech program supports over 170 women founded startups in 24 cities by providing access to community, tools, mentorship, and resources to overcome barriers and succeed in building a business in technology.
  • Is setting up three Innovation Hubs: Facebook will collaborate with co-working spaces in Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru to set up community hubs called Innovation Hubs, that will seek to foster innovation by hosting mentor hours and training for startups. This comes in close to the first-anniversary mark of India Innovation Hub in Hyderabad, which saw VR startups (from India Innovation Hub Accelerator Program) benefit from coming together for boot camps and online interactions that helped them to build their ideas.
  • Will double its reach via Developer Circles: India is home to one of the largest developer and startup communities, and we have been working to create a network of developers. Through Developer Circles, we provide developers with a platform to connect and collaborate and encourage community learning and coding via local meetups and online groups. Today, we have a community of 50,000 in 15 cities and plan to expand to 100,000 developers in over 20 cities by June 2019.

Fb India Startup

Further, Facebook also hosted India Startup Awards to recognize some of the work of India’s disruptive startup ecosystem and awarded winners in five categories including:

  • She Leads Tech to recognize the most successful tech startup launched and or led by a woman founder or co-founder. Greenway Grameen a startup that designs & distributes life-improving products amongst low-income markets. Its products solve some of the most critical problems that consumers face like clean cooking, electricity access, and even internet use.
  • Building for the World: to recognize a company that has seen success outside India and are working on solutions that are being used on a global scale. Nanoclean a company that produces affordable bio-safe nanofibers with its proprietary polymer technology. Nanoclean Limited’s first commercial product, Nasofilter, is the first ever non-inserted, hypoallergenic and self-adhering nanotechnology-based respiratory disposable nasal filter in the world. Costing just Rs.10 and very convenient to use, it has the potential to change how India and the rest of the world use respiratory protection devices.
  • Building for Tomorrow: to award a startup using emerging technologies such as AR/VR to reinvent how business and society can come up with solutions. Scapic, a platform that lets people create, share and explore immersive experiences. It helps users to build Virtual, Augmented or Mixed Reality content easily, for social media, the web, and spatial devices.
  • Building for the Next Billion to recognize startups developing and implementing solutions for social, cultural and environmental issues in India. Aye Finance, a startup built on the mission of transforming the micro and small enterprise lending in India by providing inclusive finance at an affordable price to this ‘missing middle’. Aye Finance has developed a unique “Cluster-based Credit Assessment” methodology that utilizes deep insights of operations of a business cluster and makes good lending decisions despite the absence of business accounts, credit histories or banking track records.
  • Community Builder to recognize startups that are building solutions to support the developer startup community in India. Hasura a platform that helps developers build, develop and scale their apps. It has instant APIs for rapid development, and it helps create a to-do app within three minutes.

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Fell in love with Android OS from the day I bought my first Smartphone in 2013. A budding Android Developer. Love to write about Android, Tech, and Smartphones. Technology enthusiast addicted to my smartphone, I love clicking photos with my smartphone, traveling and listening to music. Currently using a OnePlus 6T and Ticwatch S.