NetApp Inc., a Fortune 500 American multinational storage and data management company on Wednesday announced the launch of the NetApp Excellerator programme in Bengaluru, the company’s first startup nurturing initiative in India.

NetApp Excellerator is a startup accelerator program designed to help startups create world class products and innovative solutions that are market ready.

The programme was launched at the new 15-acres NetApp campus here in the presence of IT expert Mohandas Pai, partners, venture capitalists, startups and customers.

“The tech industry is going through a transformational shift with data right at the centre. Through the NetApp Excellerator programme, we would like to encourage and support start-ups and provide them with an opportunity to graduate to their next phase of growth,” said Deepak Visweswaraiah, Senior Vice President and Managing Director, NetApp India, in a statement.

The applications for the four-month programme are now open for startups. NetApp will provide an equity-free grant of $15,000 to the startups after the completion of the programme.

Selected startups will receive technology and business mentorship as well as access to markets and investors to realise the full potential of their ideas and products in the global market place.

Applications are invited from startups working in the areas related to IOT, cloud, big data and analytics, machine learning, virtualization, data security, storage and data management, and other adjacent areas.

The NetApp Excellerator program will provide startups with access to collaboration and productivity tools, co-working space out of the company’s global centre of excellence in Bengaluru as well as networking opportunities with potential investors, partners and customers.

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Selected startups will have access to NetApp platforms and technologies, tools, co-working space, HR, marketing, legal and tech support.

“Through the NetApp Excellerator programme, we seek to engage with promising entrepreneurs contributing to diverse set of tech areas,” added Ajeya Motaganahalli, Director, NetApp India.

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