Intel Startup Program is helping India’s deeptech startups build and scale solutions for the world
The program is supporting startups in cutting-edge technologies such as AI, robotics, Big Data, and blockchain to build and scale solutions for the world by creating an innovation-led ecosystem.
India’s IT industry has moved well ahead of its services-focused past. There’s no clearer indication than the growing number of deeptech startups that are powering the next wave of innovations across industries to make them future-ready as demand from end consumers drives the need for better technology.
According to Nasscom and Zinnov's study, India's Deeptech Startups – Poised for Impact, over 3,000 deeptech startups are growing at a CAGR of 53% over the last 10 years, working across industry verticals. Recognizing this trend and aiming to empower and accelerate the growth of these startups, Intel Startup Program is making significant strides.
In just five years, the Intel Startup Program has played a pivotal role in fostering the growth of the startup ecosystem in India across six emerging technology areas: artificial intelligence (AI), silicon design and manufacturing, 5G and Edge, ADAS and mobility, client and cloud computing, and cybersecurity. The program has already supported over 75 deeptech startups, enabling them to innovate and thrive.
The Program has introduced multiple far-reaching initiatives, such as the Intel Direct Program for Startups, Plugin Alliance, and Growth Tunes to support early-stage deeptech startups to scale. These initiatives have acted as catalysts, guiding startups in enhancing and expanding their cutting-edge technologies.
One of the program's core strengths lies in its tailored mentorship, focusing on three crucial aspects: technical prowess, product-market fit (PMF) guidance, and strategic business insights. With a mentor pool consisting of more than 45 principal engineers and leading technologists potentially the highest semiconductor mentor pool in the ecosystem, Intel Startup Program offers startups unprecedented, personalized guidance on optimizing the computing stack, from silicon to software and from the edge to the cloud.
Dr. Rohin Y, CEO and Co-founder, LightSpeed Photonics, acknowledges the program’s impact stating, " Intel’s technical mentoring as well as their business units and system architect’s feedback has been crucial in the early stages of our system architecture. As a major computing chip manufacturer, Intel’s role was crucial for our system-in-package development."
The program's thoughtfully curated mentors and domain experts provide invaluable architectural and solutioning insights, stimulating the startups' technical prowess. Moreover, the portfolio startups also get opportunities for technical collaboration across the corporate ecosystem and Intel business units.
Furthermore, the portfolio startups gain exclusive access to world-class mentors who offer insightful advice on product development and innovation needs, forging deep connections with industry leaders and igniting transformative growth. Enhancing product efficiency enables startups to maintain a competitive total cost of ownership (TCO), thereby improving cost-competitiveness and margins.
Atul Rai, CEO and Co-founder, Staqu Technologies, highlights the program’s role in their success, " The Intel Startup Program improved our approach towards architecture, customer engagement, and growing our venture. It provided more deployment architecture options to optimise total cost of ownership. Moreover, we were able to implement a successful go-to-market strategy globally with Intel’s guidance, which helped us acquire major clients. Intel also helped connect with various investors."
The Intel Startup Program also facilitates connections between startups and key players in the global market, such as original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), original design manufacturers (ODMs), and global system integrators (GSIs). These connections pave the way for scaling products or solutions and establishing crucial customer connections.
To boost the startups' global visibility and market differentiation, the program showcases their distinctive and compelling value propositions through innovative platforms. It also provides opportunities for interaction with seasoned professionals in the innovation ecosystem.
Sekar Udayamurthy, Co-founder and CEO, Jidoka Technologies, acknowledges the comprehensive support from the Intel Startup Program, stating, "The breadth of ecosystem support from the Intel Startup Program and its depth of technical knowledge to support varied use cases has been the backbone of our relationship and has been immensely useful to us. The programme also introduced us to the Industry 4.0 community."
Recognizing the vital role of investment in startup growth, the program ensures access to a vast network of influential investors and venture funds specializing in deeptech startups and cutting-edge technologies. Expert guidance on fundraising strategies, encompassing both debt and equity options, is provided by seasoned investment professionals with deep understanding and experience in the tech space.
Amit Singh, Co-founder and CEO, Constems-AI Systems, expresses his appreciation for the program's support, describing it as "nothing short of amazing", saying, "Intel has been of great help to us to identify competencies, which improve our core. We also received sound advice on product development, go-to-market strategy, and hyper-focusing on positioning and penetrating the market."
Additionally, the program assists startups in building their brand by leveraging Intel's marketing engines, including custom marketing collaterals, an annual coffee table book, and participation in ecosystem events. Startups also benefit from mentors who provide business coaching, pitch improvement, value proposition refinement, pricing strategy, and connections with external mentors and coaches.
In short, being a portfolio startup of the Intel Startup Program brings with it immense credibility to confidently engage with investors, customers, and partners.
Deeptech is shaping industries, governments, and societies worldwide and significantly improving people’s lives. To foster indigenous innovations, address national development goals, and promote, validate, support, and drive the adoption of emerging technologies that solve governance challenges, the Intel Startup Program remains committed to creating initiatives that enhance the deeptech ecosystem and ultimately enhance consumer’s daily life.
If you’re a startup working on a solution within these technologies — AI, silicon design and manufacturing, 5G and Edge, ADAS and mobility, client and cloud computing, and security — apply for a spot in the Intel Startup Program, and give your startup the boost it needs to scale.