Asia Hardware Battle 2018: First stop, India

Updated 19:38 pm 20 August 2018: This post has been updated to include our other India partner, One Co.Work.

India is one of the hottest startup hubs in the world today. According to Economic Times, a Nasscom-Zinov report revealed that India has added over 1,000 tech startups in 2017, making that a total of about 5,000 tech startups in the country. Part of it could be due to the growing number of angel investors focused on early-stage technology companies, and therefore easier access to capital and increased mentorship.

However, the country’s startup successes, such as Flipkart, India’s biggest e-commerce platform, and Ola, India’s most popular mobile app for transportation, have mostly been about software.

The biggest challenge faced by hardware startups in India is the lack of a well-developed infrastructure, meaning not enough existing lab facilities for testing prototypes before market launch. Although, of late, government initiatives such as Design in India, Make in India, and Startup India, have shifted the focus to the manufacturing sector.

To help facilitate this shift, our team will be traveling to the center of India’s high-tech industry, Bangalore, for the City Pitching portion of AHB, in which the winning hardware startup will get access to industry resources provided by TechNode and our partners.

In Bangalore, we will be joined by one of our India partners, Revvx Hardware Accelerator. Revvx is India’s first and largest accelerator focused on supporting hardware startups through the prototyping, mass manufacturing, and distribution stages of consumer electronics and connected devices. Revvx works with major Silicon Valley companies as well as global design studios across India, China, and Taiwan. They also work with 15 hardware startups every year through their Accelerator Program and 20 additional startups through mentorship. Startups they have worked with come from all over the world, including India, Singapore, Hong Kong, Croatia, and Slovenia.

The event in Bangalore will take place on August 31 at Kstart Respace. It will be hosted by the Revvx team, who will be supporting us throughout the entire AHB organizational process, from recruiting and evaluating applicants to sourcing for judges.

We are also working with One Co.Work to bring AHB to Delhi (9/8), Mumbai (9/9), Chennai (9/15), and Hyderabad (9/16). One Co.Work will also be hosting the India Final in Delhi (9/28). One Co.Work provides affordable and quality office space and aims to create an environment that speeds up the growth of entrepreneurs. One Co.Work’s journey began in 2015, a time when finding a co-working space at a central location within a certain budget was a tough task. The team at One Co.Work came up with not just an idea but also a vision of providing flexible, work-oriented, and reliable workspace for startups, SMEs, freelancers, and corporates.

Online registration

Online registration for City Pitching is still open. Applicants will be reviewed and 10 teams from each city will be chosen to take part in City Pitching. City Pitching will be half-day affairs taking place city-by-city. Startups will be given 7 minutes for pitch and demo, followed by an intense round of questions from prominent judges in the industry. After all 10 startups have completed their pitch, judges will deliberate over the top winner. The top winner from each city will automatically qualify for the final, and remaining runner-up teams will undergo stringent preliminary selection by top international judges including, but not limited to, professionals, corporates, and VCs from TechCrunch, BMW, SoftBank, 500 Startups, and many more.

What we’re looking for

We’re looking for hardware startups with Pre-Series A or a total funding of less than $5 million. Startups must have a prototype, and projects must exhibit the following: creativity, pain point resolution, business value, sustainable development, technical innovation, and product design.

What you’ll get

Only 15 teams will emerge to take part in The Grand Finals held in Shanghai.

A rundown of the awards:

  • AHB Gold: RMB 50,000
  • AHB Silver: RMB 30,000
  • AHB Bronze: RMB 10,000
  • Top 3 Winners are entitled to 6 months of 7 complimentary workspaces, courtesy of NodeSpace.
  • Top 15 Finalists will get the chance to interact and network with our distinguished judges and conduct exclusive interviews with TechNode and our media partners.
  • Top 15 Finalists will be invited to our branded events.