02/04/2019

Six data driven startups, one phenomenal program: NetApp Excellerator Demo Day 3 excerpts

Innovation and value creation rule Cohort 3 Demo Day

Innovation is at the heart of what NetApp does; it helps us keep abreast of emerging trends in the fast-changing world of technology and ensures that we hold on to our position as market leader in a highly competitive industry.

We also realize that innovation never stands alone.

One of the ways we help others further innovation is through our award-winning startup accelerator program, NetApp Excellerator. We lend our expertise in the areas of the hybrid cloud, storage, and data management to startups, thus helping them realize the maximum potential of their innovative ideas.

On January 17, as the third cohort of program graduated, it was once again evident how NetApp is helping give these organizations the push needed to fly.

The six startups, CloudOptimoInstaSafeFirstHivePraktice.aiCardiotrack and Zscore Technologies, presented their innovations to a packed audience of investors, industry leaders and experts at the NetApp Excellerator Cohort 3 Demo Day held in Bangalore. These startups focus on areas like Artificial Intelligence, Cloud, Cyber Security and Analytics applied in wide-impact areas like operations, marketing and healthcare.

“It’s been a great journey that has involved interacting with over a thousand startups, learning new things and most of all representing this phenomenal brand and platform that stands for excellence and is designed to foster innovation in the ecosystem,” said Ajeya Motaganahalli, Senior Director and leader of the NetApp Excellerator Program, during his welcome address.

As a step up, the program also went global with this cohort as it welcomed two international startups – Praktice.ai and Cardiotrack, that are headquartered in Singapore and have a global customer base.

Value creation

Divergent thinking startups in enterprise tech and healthcare tech ruled Cohort 3. And the goal of the program was to help them create value.

“We wanted to select startups that we could help create value,” said Ajeya. “We also created value in terms of valuation. Our startups together collectively have made an excess of $25 million in the market. We’ve created with the help of our sales team about 100 good market opportunities collectively for the startups. We spent 500 coaching and mentoring hours, and these coaches come from the technical pool of NetApp as well as from top schools.”

A transforming technology landscape

“In today’s world, every single market has essentially been reopened. The concept of a digital relationship, of data being what makes you different, is something that hasn’t really existed before. Small companies are now able to leverage technologies that large organizations haven’t been able to leverage because their data may be trapped due to proprietary issues. What we try to do is help companies liberate their data, and more companies with much less capital can build much faster,” said Anthony Lye during a roundtable conversation with Joel Reich and Deepak Visweswaraiah on creating possibilities in the startup ecosystem.

Madhurima Agarwal also facilitated a B2B panel discussion with investors and startups where they discussed the startup ecosystem in India, trends in the market and big bets in the startup world.

Startups on their NetApp Excellerator Experience

The startup pitches were an integral part of the event with organizations getting seven minutes each to present their innovations to jury members, followed by a three-minute Q&A session. Startups shared their journey, the challenges they face, the ones they’ve overcome, how they’ve benefitted from NetApp Excellerator and their future plans.

Cardiotrack, an IoT and AI-based heart health diagnostics technology company, also used the occasion to launch a new app for patients through which the latter can digitize their health records, get connected to specialists and control illnesses through real time monitoring and expert advice.

“Scaling up is very important and that’s where NetApp has played an incredible role for us by working with us on the architecture and look at how we can move from 600 million events to 200 billion events per day capacity,” said Aditya Bhamidipaty, founder and CEO, FirstHive, a customer data platform that builds unique customer identities by aggregating data from across all sources of customer interactions and customer transactions, and drives marketing ROI for consumer marketing focused large enterprises.

“Our NetApp Excellerator experience has been simply outstanding,” said Dilip Murali of ZScore, an AI analytics company with their own platform that can be deployed on top of existing business intelligence systems. “The tech mentorship has helped us understand where we need to scale because we need to very large volumes of data. The investor connect in today’s event is a proof of what NetApp can give us, and from a go-to-market perspective NetApp has been very generous in exposing their sales and marketing teams globally to us so that we can work in partnership with them.”