Microsoft and Akamai announces first cybersecurity-focused accelerator in Israel

Startup nation Israel is setting up yet another benchmark for the startup ecosystem, this time in the field of cybersecurity.

Microsoft and Akamai Technologies have announced that, together with leading venture capital (VC) firm Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP), they are working on a unique accelerator in the field of cybersecurity. The program is located at the Microsoft Ventures Accelerator in Tel Aviv and the class will run through January 2015. Startups accepted into the program will be announced Aug. 24, 2014.


The participants will also receive free tools, top-quality mentorship, and other resources designed to help them successfully grow their business. In addition to making available its respected Web-security expertise, Akamai is offering to invest up to $25,000 with each cybersecurity startup accepted into the program through the purchase of convertible notes. Mentoring and introductions to relevant partners and customers will also be offered.

Akamai Technologies is a leading provider of cloud services for delivering, optimizing and securing online content and business applications. At the core of the Company’s solutions is the Akamai Intelligent Platform providing extensive reach, coupled with first class reliability, security, visibility and expertise.

Stuart Scholly, senior vice president and general manager, Security Business Unit, Akamai said,

Akamai’s globally distributed computing platform was designed from day one to be as safe and secure as possible, and we have continued to make investments in this area. And yet, the computer security landscape continues to evolve with new threats emerging every day. We believe that supporting security innovation, not only at Akamai, but also through promising entrepreneurs, is of true benefit to our customers and any company doing business on the Internet.

This collaboration strengthens Microsoft’s already solid partnership announced a leading VC, Jerusalem Venture Partners(JVP). JVP is Israel’s largest early stage cyber security investor having built up companies like CyberArk Software, Navajo Systems (acquired by SalesForce), Magnifire (acquired by F5 Networks), as well as numerous originating from the firms JVP Cyber Labs, the first cyber security incubator in Israel.

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Participants will gain professional sessions and active mentoring from JVP, which will be an active participant in the startups selection process and will offer a $1 million investment in one of the cybersecurity startups at the end of program.

Zack Weisfeld, head of Microsoft Ventures Europe mentioned in the official announcement,

Tech startups have the potential to shape the future of cybersecurity. Like us, Akamai is a big proponent of secure computing with a massive reach. Our partnership will spur the success of cybersecurity innovation based on our respective insights and learnings gained over the years.

Microsoft’s collaboration with Akamai and JVP is intended to provide startups with mentorship and market expertise that can help them accelerate their business and create breakthroughs in cybersecurity.

You can apply here to be a part of this cybersecurity accelerator.

About the author

Harshith has been tracking the Indian startup ecosystem for about two years. You may find him at startup events, sticking his nose in other people's business, looking for his 'next big scoop'. An alumnus of Manipal Institute of Technology, Manipal, he is a keyboard warrior and couch potato. You can connect wih him on LinkedIn:, Twitter: @HarshithMallya or FB-

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