“With the VC Brand Incubator, our aim is to help our brands gain more insights into leveraging the Facebook family of apps for growth,” Rajan Anandan, managing director of Sequoia Capital India, said in a statement.
“We know from our experience with 140 million small businesses across the globe that timely skilling and mentorship are critical for young brands to succeed,” Archana Vohra, director of small and medium businesses at Facebook India, added.
VC Brand Incubator was established in June 2019 by Facebook to support India’s small and medium businesses through collaboration with venture capital funds.
The Silicon Valley firm claimed it had vision to build a more conducive environment for small and medium business growth in India. “Working with venture capital funds is an integral part of this vision,” it said.
Prior to the partnership with Surge, the programme has been in cooperation with three venture capital firms – Sauce.VC, Fireside Ventures and SAIF Partners – through which it claims to have mentored more than 70 brands at various stages of growth in multiple industries.
Some of the startups participating in previous editions of VC Brand Incubator include Delhi-based baby care products startup The Moms Co and Mumbai-based personal care startup mCaffeine.
In addition to VC Brand Incubator, Facebook has also launched two other support programmes in the country, namely Facebook Digital Training to offer free social and content marketing training, and Facebook Startup Training Hub, which helps entrepreneurs digitise their business.
Like any developing country, the growth of small and medium enterprises is critical to India’s economy, which is expected to reach $5 trillion by 2025.
Meanwhile, Surge was launched in January 2019 as the scale-up platform for early-stage startups across South and Southeast Asia. The accelerator invests between $1-2 million in selected startups, combining with company-building workshops, global immersion trips and community support.
To date, Surge has accepted two cohorts of 37 startups from six countries in South and Southeast Asia.