IBM Offers Blockchain Founder Accelerator

Announcements, Blockchain, Group, Innovation | May 19, 2017 By:

Global tech giant IBM has initiated a paid program to help organizations develop pilot projects using blockchain technologies.

Called IBM Blockchain Founder Accelerator (IBMBFA), the program is designed to take new blockchain network founders through from proof of concept or pilot to a production blockchain network by end of 2017.

The goal of the IBMBFA is to provide guidance, support, and technical expertise to bring new blockchain networks into production and supporting an ecosystem of users and partners. IBM said the accelerator targets not just technology but the legal and business considerations of establishing new blockchain networks.

The program will provide one-on-one mentoring to support a range of needs including business case development, network membership incentives, technical development, governance, and legal issues. Members will also have early access to pre-built software assets delivered via IBM Cloud.

IBM will pick eight of the best ideas, or blockchain network founders, to participate in the program. Founders will come from a range of industries such as banking, logistics, manufacturing, and retail.

The program comes in two tiers: Tier 1 cost $100,000 and is designed for teams ready to build their MVP themselves. Tier 2 cost $250,000 and is designed for teams ready to build their MVP with IBM’s Bluemix Garage, a cloud-based infrastructure platform. IBM said scholarships will be available for participants that need financial aid.

“Blockchain is a team sport,” said IBM blockchain technology general manager Marie Wieck. “With the right network of participants collaborating on the blockchain, the benefits can be exponential. IBM has worked on more blockchain projects than any other player in the industry and we understand the challenges organizations face and the resources needed to get blockchain networks right the first time.”