IBM, Columbia University Launch Two Blockchain Accelerator Programs

Blockchain, News | November 20, 2018 By:

Tech giant IBM and Columbia University have announced two new blockchain accelerator programs to help early-stage and later-stage companies build and scale blockchain businesses.

The programs, which is part of the Columbia-IBM Center for Blockchain and Data Transparency, will offer entrepreneurs and blockchain network founders around the world access to the expertise and resources they need to establish blockchain networks. The programs will each support ten startups and will help them develop their ideas into sustainable and scalable companies offering blockchain solutions.

The first accelerator program, the IBM Blockchain Accelerator, is an eight-week program targeted at later-stage companies globally and focused on building out an enterprise business network and client base for their blockchain application. The program will be run in-person in New York and San Francisco, and “in combination with virtual programming” to ensure that founders can participate while devoting time and energy to scaling their businesses.

The second eight-week program, the Columbia Blockchain Launch Accelerator, will target pre-seed, idea-stage companies with a Columbia or other recognized New York City-based University affiliation. The program, which will take place on-site in New York City, will give participants access to tools and will receive training on how to build a blockchain startup.

Both programs will give participants access to technology and services valued at approximately $400K per company. These include agile design workshops from IBM, an experienced network of business and technical support, connections to the Columbia research community and student talent pools, business value design assistance and access to IBM Cloud technology. Nominations for the IBM Blockchain Accelerator are now open, while applications for Launch will open in January 2019.

“The possibilities presented by blockchain technology are seemingly endless, and we are seeing strong dedication by technical talent to build game-changing applications,” said David Post, Managing Director, IBM Blockchain Accelerator. “What is also needed to truly bring about this sea change is the right technology and expertise which is why IBM is working with Columbia to help give these early- and mid-stage founders a way to build enterprise-grade networks that can move blockchain innovation forward.”

“Columbia University has successfully launched several technology accelerators in New York City, but this our first in partnership with a corporation that is a clear industry leader in the field,” said Satish Rao, Executive Director, Columbia Blockchain Launch Accelerator. “Early- and late-stage teams will undoubtedly benefit from IBM’s technology resources, expertise and established network coupled with Columbia’s ground-breaking research and talent in blockchain and data transparency, all while benefiting from rapidly growing NYC blockchain communities.”