Amazon, the American multinational technology company, is looking to penetrate the world of accelerator programs as it has announced a 10-week program for generative AI startups around the globe, AWS Generative AI Accelerator. The global program is designed to help ten early-stage startups to build and launch in the Generative AI industry.
According to TechCrunch, the big tech made its first foray into the world of accelerator programs in 2016, with an accelerator program for startups focused on conversational AI. It also created the Alexa Prize for conversational AI for college students.
The mission of this program is to help early-stage Generative AI companies build community & technical skills, drive machine learning performance, and raise awareness for their company. It will also provide startup founders access to bleeding-edge AI models, go-to-market strategy tailored to Generative AI, machine learning stack optimization, and networking with industry influencers.
Speaking about this program, Rob Ferguson, AWS Global Head of AI/ML Startups, said,
Generative AI has unlocked new developments and creativity. “Artificial intelligence and machine learning are some of the most transformative technologies of our generation, and have been a main focus area for Amazon for more than 20 years….[we’re] excited about what next big thing we can help power through the cloud.
With the focus on this emerging technology, this program is looking to take this technology out of the realm of research. AWS believes that the startup ecosystem is a catalyst for innovation in AI and is looking to offer another avenue of support for the top Generative AI companies in the world.
Benefits included in Amazon’s generative AI accelerator
Up to $300k in AWS Credits: Cohort participants will receive $200,000 in AWS promotional credits and may receive up to $100,000 in AWS activate credits to help build their companies. This is very much needed as the Generative AI models and industry demand a lot of computing power.
Pitching opportunities: After completing the 10-week program, the attendees will be allowed to pitch to the Generative AI community – including investors, press, and customers – to raise awareness for their company.
Mentoring and networking opportunities: The program offers these AI engineers access to dedicated business and technical mentors. It also provides a community for participants to connect with their peers and GenAI leaders at industry-focused networking events.
The AWS Generative AI Accelerator is designed for seed and pre-seed Generative AI startups that already have AI solutions built or are already in the works. It is open to founders from all over the world leveraging cloud technologies or those who plan to.
Startups with a minimum viable product, traction with customers, and working on product value propositions – and already building on AWS – are eligible to apply for this accelerator program. Also, startup founders new to Amazon Web Service can still apply.
Non-technical founders are eligible, but there is a need for the startup to either have a technical C-level executive, CXO, or co-founder, given the technical nature of Generative AI.
It is, however, not open to government-related startups or businesses that have previously violated AWS Acceptable Use Policy. It is also not open to businesses with AWS employees or its affiliates in leadership positions.
The AWS Generative AI Accelerator is a hybrid program, with the first and last weeks of the program event as in-person, while weeks 2 through 9 are virtual. Although AWS is not entitled to provide travel or accommodations for the selected startups, virtual accommodations can be made for participants who cannot attend the in-person weeks.
The screening process will be based on factors including target market, founder-market fit, depth of machine learning native product integrations, and team composition.
Applications open on April 4, 2023, and close on April 17, 2023. To apply, click here.
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