Microsoft Corp. and Akamai Technologies, a leading provider of cloud services for delivering, optimizing and securing online content and business applications, have announced that, together with leading venture capital (VC) firm Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP), they are working on a unique accelerator in the field of cybersecurity. The program is located at the Microsoft Ventures Accelerator in Tel Aviv, and interested entrepreneurs and startups can apply now at http://www.microsoftventures.com/accelerators/telaviv. Startups accepted into the program will be announced Aug. 24, 2014, and the class will run through January 2015.
“Tech startups have the potential to shape the future of cybersecurity,” said Zack Weisfeld, head of Microsoft Ventures Europe. “Akamai is the perfect partner to join Microsoft in delivering unparalleled access and value to startups joining the accelerator. 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 cybersecurity innovation based on our respective insights and learnings gained over the years.”
This collaboration strengthens Microsoft’s already solid partnership announced a leading VC, JVP. Participants will gain professional sessions and active mentoring from JVP, which will be an active participant in the startups selection process and will offer a $1 million investment in one of the cybersecurity startups at the end of program.
The participants will also receive free tools, top-quality mentorship, and other resources designed to help them successfully grow their business. In addition to making available its respected Web-security expertise, Akamai is offering to invest up to $25,000 with each cybersecurity startup accepted into the program through the purchase of convertible notes. Mentoring and introductions to relevant partners and customers will also be offered.
“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, Security Business Unit, Akamai. “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.”
Microsoft’s collaboration with Akamai and JVP is intended to provide startups with mentorship and market expertise that can help them accelerate their business and create breakthroughs in cybersecurity.