Europe’s first blockchain accelerator, Chain Accelerator, announced the launch of its incubator program today. The announcement was made at StationF, the world’s largest startup campus, located in Paris where the company will reside.
The blockchain accelerator program, which runs for six months, is designed to enable startups looking to deploy blockchain solutions, to develop and build out their businesses. Chain Accelerator has built a network of leading organizations and specialized firms to offer a wide range of services to blockchain startups including technical prototyping, business development, funding guidance, ICO support, marketing, and public relations. The company also provides “token economy” advisory, helping companies optimize their ICO launches.
Havas Blockchain, for instance, assists prospective companies with communication services for ICOs while PricewaterhouseCoopers France offers legal and financial advisory to ICOs. Meanwhile, Sharpstone Advisory provides companies with consulting for fundraising while Blocktech assists with tech prototyping. Other firms making up the Chain Accelerator’s network include A.T. Kearney, Alto Avocats, Otsar, InnovHub, Pole Leonard de Vinci, French Association for Cryptocurrencies, The Smart Model, and Blockchain @ Edu.
In addition to its comprehensive network of business partners, Chain Accelerator has onboarded 30 internationally renowned mentors to help speed up the growth of participating blockchain startups. The biggest names on the list include Bibop G. Gresta (Chairman & Co-founder, Hyperloop Transportation Company) and Leonard Schrank (Advisor, Boston Consulting Group) as well as Pascal Gauthier (President, Ledger) and Pamir Gelenbe (Managing Partner, Libertus Capital).
Chain Accelerator announced that 13 startups are already benefiting from its blockchain incubation program. Among the companies mentioned include Talao, Gatecoin, Gimli, POI, BC Diploma, among others.
Talao, for instance, is developing a blockchain solution that would make it possible to build and organize communities of independent experts. Gatecoin is another young company that is building a cryptocurrency exchange platform offering services to ICO projects. POI, meanwhile, is a decentralized ecosystem dedicated to impacting economy and revitalization of territories. BC Diploma is a blockchain-based application that enables Certification of diplomas to be accessible in just one click.
The launch of this blockchain accelerator program comes at a time when the French governmentis actively working to position Paris as an international hub for blockchain technology.According to Chain Accelerator co-founder, Nicolas Cantu:
“At a time when the President and the Government want to make Paris, the capital of the ICOs, Chain Accelerator is positioning itself as a key player. By setting up a global and operational network in Paris, it brings together the best talent, extends the circle of contributors, and prepares for disruptions to help blockchain projects develop protocols in all sectors.”
When asked about the vetting process for startups seeking to participate in the program, Chain Accelerator board member Michael Amar told Business Blockchain HQ that they will be granting “voting power” to StationF as well as the company’s mentors, business partners and program alumni.
While the U.S government takes a backward approach to adopting blockchain technology, the French and European governments seem to be more receptive to the technology. This indeed, is great news to blockchain startups and traditional companies looking to implement blockchain technology in their business processes. On this, Amar added:
“This is a race against time. The talents are the key to success, any initiative / ecosystem that promotes education and fundraising will have a huge advantage.”
For early stage startups, accelerators like Chain Accelerator offer a great opportunity to increase their likelihood of success and fast track their growth. Accelerators help startups shorten their timeline of building successful businesses from roughly two years to just a few months. At the end of the program, participating startups pitch their products to investors and media at a demonstration event.