Sberbank and 500 Startups select seven start-ups for Silicon Valley

Source: Sberbank

Sberbank has selected thirty start-ups that completed the acceleration at the joint Russian-American accelerator of Sberbank and 500 Startups. Sberbank also decided to invest up to RUB 120 mln in them.

More than half of start-ups received offers on cooperation from major Russian companies that took part in the Demo Day of the accelerator. As a result of the acceleration, seven teams were selected. Their products were recognised as having foreign market potential. The participants of those teams will be sent to Silicon Valley (California, US) where they will take part in a four-week educational course under the Silicon Valley Exchange Program.

In addition to CEO of Sberbank Herman Gref and CEO and Founding Partner of 500 Startups Christine Tsai, the expert council of the Demo Day consisted of representatives of large investment companies such as: CEO of Medsi Group Elena Brusilova, Chairwoman of the Executive Board of Soyuzmultfilm Studio Yuliana Slashcheva, CEO of VimpelCom Vasil Latsanich, CEO of Rambler & Co Alexander Mamut, and special guest Ambassador of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg to Russia Jean-Claude Knebeler. Each of them selected three teams with products that could complement their current business and chose the best start-up that received a special prize from experts.

Seven teams that will be sent on the foreign internship will present their projects to international investors and corporations in San Francisco.

CEO and Chairman of the Executive Board of Sberbank Herman Gref:

“Sberbank is 177 years old, and it is not easy for us to reinvent ourselves so that we can keep competing with companies that are nine or thirty years old and are much more valuable than all the traditional companies combined. We are glad that we can learn from such young companies as 500 Startups.”

Start-ups that will attend the American part of the programme:



Third Opinion - an AI-based service for automatic analysis of medical images.

Data Screen - a service for analysing and managing digital content distribution.

Heartex - tools for collecting data and transforming it into datasets.

i-Brain - an AI-based neural interface that helps people recover motor functions after brain injuries.

Mishka AI - a smart soft toy that incorporates AI and a built-in platform for delivering content for children.

Oz Forensics - a platform that verifies the authenticity of digital documents and photos.

Yorso - a B2B wholesale seafood marketplace.

CEO and Chairman of the Executive Board of Sberbank Herman Gref:

“What do we all have in common? Christine Tsai was right when she said that we all dream to leave a mark, to turn the world upside down and make it a better place. I think this is something that unites all our participants, people who are not afraid to start their own businesses. It means a lot. Each of us is likely to find their place somewhere, but you were not afraid to start your businesses, and I respect you a lot for that. It may be the bravest step of your life.”

The Russian stage of the accelerator of Sberbank and 500 Startups lasted for 10 weeks. The thirty strongest start-ups, selected by experts of Sberbank, 500 Startups and representatives of twenty-five of the project’s partners, were educated by American mentors under the original accelerator programme. During it, the teams attended more than 200 hours of lectures and workshops given by twenty-five mentors from Silicon Valley, tested 192 business hypotheses and attracted 164 large clients.

Projects in e-commerce, telemedicine, cloud technology, lifestyle, big data, AI, IoT, robotics, blockchain, VR and AR, machine learning, fintech and other areas of the digital economy took part in the accelerator.

CEO and Chairman of the Executive Board of Sberbank Herman Gref:

“I hope that you turn the world upside down, make it a better place, achieve all your goals, and believe in yourselves in spite of everything. Because each failure is the next step to enormous success. The difference between successful and unsuccessful people is not the number of mistakes, but number of times when they had the will to continue after another failure. I hope you become our competitors and beat Sberbank in this competition.”
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