Flipkart on Monday announced the expansion of its flagship startup accelerator programme ‘Leap’ into two new programmes to identify wider and relevant market opportunities for its selected startups. The initiative will now evolve into two new programmes — Flipkart Leap Ahead (FLA) and Flipkart Leap Innovation Network (FLIN). These programmes will support the startups through insights, mentorship and funding as needed, while helping them scale and build disruptive innovations, the company said in a statement.
Flipkart Leap Ahead will invest in seed-stage startups at the cutting edge of the latest technology across varied sectors, which have disruptive business models and are innovating in areas that are a priority for the Flipkart group.
The Flipkart Leap Innovation Network programme has been designed to enable a broader set of start-ups to engage with Flipkart’s product and tech teams, the company said in a statement.
“As a homegrown company, we are thrilled to bring innovative propositions back to the ecosystem to foster new-age startups, ” said Ravi Iyer, Senior Vice President and Head, Corporate Development, Flipkart.
“With dedicated tracks for early-stage and growth-stage startups, this cohort will now expand its benefits to a much wider pool of entrepreneurs who are solving for Digital India,” he added.
The Flipkart Leap Innovation Network aims to identify startups across sectors with a broad focus on fintech, supply chain, logistics, SaaS (focused on consumer tech), alternate commerce, B2B, social, healthtech, agritech and edtech, among others. A select set of startups will also get the opportunity to execute pilots and forge commercial partnerships with Flipkart.
The Flipkart Leap Ahead programme will be the cornerstone of seed-stage investments made by Flipkart Ventures, the $100 million venture fund announced earlier last year by the company.
The Flipkart Leap programme graduated its first cohort in July 2021 with eight startups, who have gone on to successfully raise further funding/investment post their selection in the programme.
“In our journey to reach the next 200 million customers, we will look out for start-ups that have innovative solutions that cater to the dynamic needs of our country and help them scale their vision with us, ” said Jeyandran Venugopal, Chief Product and Technology Officer, Flipkart.
The application for Flipkart Leap Ahead and Flipkart Leap Innovation Network programmes are open till February 28.