Visakhapatnam to be new home for XLr8

XLr8, the technology business accelerator set up in Tirupati by the A.P. Innovation Society in partnership with the IC2 Institute of the University of Texas in Austin and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI), will be shifted to Visakhapatnam next month.

The address

It will function at the Sunrise Incubation Tower located at Rushikonda, considered the Cyber Hills of Andhra Pradesh.

“We have started arrangements for its relocation. Space has already been earmarked for XLr8,” APIS CEO V. Valli Kumari told
The Hindu
.

The tower is now home to the Startup Accelerator India (SAI) promoted by the State government, the Singapore-based Govin Capital, and the NASSCOM Warehouse and facilitation centre of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).

Prof. Kumari said the technology business accelerator, a pilot project to create world-class ecosystem for innovators by promoting startups with incubation and acceleration of technology companies into the global market, was being relocated in consultation with the government.

‘Decision driven by merit’

Stating that the decision was purely driven by merit, she said the existence of robust industrial infrastructure and premier industrial establishments such as Hindustan Shipyard Ltd, Visakhapatnam Steel Plant, Visakh Refinery of the HPCL, and the Ship Building Centre in Visakhapatnam would help the units being groomed at the centre to scale up to the next level.

Research arm

The IC2 Institute is an interdisciplinary research arm of the University of Texas, which works to advance the theory and practice of entrepreneurial wealth creation. The institute is responsible for generating an economic impact worth billions of dollars through various firms in 26 countries.

XLr8 seeks pitching of ideas from startups from across the country and handholds them in identifying the disruptive technologies that address unstructured social changes. Each cohort undergoes assessment. In each batch, 100 firms are selected, and out of them the XLr8 zeroes in on the most promising 22 startups for advanced rounds of training. Finally, eight firms are selected for venture capital funding.

Fillip to startups

A chief executive of an IT company in the city said the shifting of XLr8 would give a fillip to the strengthening of the startup ecosystem in Visakhapatnam.

The IT companies and BPO firms generate a revenue of Rs. 2,000 crore, which is on a steady increase.

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