Microsoft Ventures and cloud services provider Akamai Technologies are to develop the first cyber security accelerator programme in Israel.
Working in partnership with Israeli venture capital firm Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP), the companies will provide startups with the necessary tools, mentorship and market expertise to help them accelerate their cyber security business. The programme will be based at the Microsoft Ventures Accelerator in Tel Aviv and will be held during January 2015. Entrepreneurs and startups can apply for the programme now, while the successful participants will be revealed on 24 August.
“Tech startups have the potential to shape the future of cybersecurity,” said Zack Weisfeld, head of Microsoft Ventures Europe. “Like us, Akamai is a big proponent of secure computing with a massive reach. We are eager to partner with Akamai to spur the success of cyber security innovation based on our respective insights and knowledge gained over the years.”
Akamai will provide web security expertise and has offered to invest up to US$25,000 for each cyber security startup accepted into the programme through the purchase of convertible notes. The company will also offer mentoring and introductions to relevant partners and customers.
“Akamai’s globally distributed computing platform was designed from day one to be as safe and secure as possible and we have continued to make investments in this area,” said Stuart Scholly, senior vice president and general manager of Akamai’s security business unit. “And yet, the computer security landscape continues to evolve with new threats emerging every day. We believe that supporting security innovation, not only at Akamai, but also through promising entrepreneurs, is of true benefit to our customers and any company doing business on the Internet.”
JVP, which is already a Microsoft partner, will help to select the startups and will provide professional sessions and mentoring services throughout the programme. In addition, the firm will invest US$1 million in one of the cyber security startups at the end of programme.
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