BOSTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Last week, MassChallenge announced the names of the 128 teams that were selected to participate in the 2013 Accelerator Program. There were over 1,200 applicants this year from over 39 countries. Of those applicants, 54 came from Russia, making Russia the country with the second highest number of applicants after the US. RVC USA, a two-time sponsor of MassChallenge, is proud to present the four Russian teams that were chosen to join the MassChallenge class of 2013 to compete for over $1 million in prizes:
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The 50% increase in number of Russian applicants in 2013 from last year, when only 36 companies from Russia applied, highlights the growing traction of innovation in a country with a market economy just over 20 years old. The Russian government is currently very proactive in promoting entrepreneurship in Russia by introducing Russian startups to the international marketplace. Since its launch in February 2012, RVC USA has actively pursued opportunities to promote Russian startups, which includes providing sponsorship and mentorship at MassChallenge in Boston, the Global Technology Symposium in Silicon Valley and Russian Innovation Week, an upcoming event which will take place both in Boston and Silicon Valley this year.
“Our mission at RVC USA is to promote bilateral investment and innovation between the United States and Russia. The increase in the number of Russian applicants to MassChallenge this year is a testament to the value of MassChallenge and the desire of both nations to collaborate in developing new technologies and products that will change the world,” said Axel Tillmann, CEO of RVC USA. “I was extremely impressed with the caliber of the teams coming out of Russia this year and I look forward to build upon the great success we have had with MassChallenge these past two years.”
During last week’s announcement, Scott Bailey, Director of Partnerships at MassChallenge, praised the ten year anniversary launch of the BIT, Russian national competition of technological business plans. Last Monday, Scott had a chance to speak via teleconference to BIT participants in Russia, greeting them on behalf of MassChallenge and emphasizing the importance of business plan competitions.
"Russia continues to be a hub of innovation, thanks to great investment organizations, like RVC. They are making great efforts to develop the next generation of ideas and technologies. We are excited to have a strong pool of applicants from Russia this year. We had nine companies enter Round 2 and four made it to the accelerator round," said Scott.
During this year’s competition, RVC USA will provide business advice and mentorship to the Russian and other MassChallenge teams. The MassChallenge startup competition is scheduled to commence June 25, 2013 and conclude with an awards ceremony October 30, 2013.
About RVC USA
RVC USA, formerly known as Russian Venture Company USA, Inc., was established as a representative of RVC, a Russian government $1B fund of funds, to promote bilateral investment opportunities and innovation collaboration between Russia and the US. The firm is headquartered in Boston and has an additional office in Silicon Valley. For more information on RVC USA, please visit www.RVC-USA.com
RVC is a government fund of funds and a development institute of the Russian Federation; since 2006 it has been one of Russia’s key tools in building its own national innovation economy. RVC invests government capital through VC funds that it creates in partnership with private investors.
RVC has backed 12 funds (including two funds outside Russia) with a total capitalization of RUB 26 billion (about US$860 million), its share amounting to RUB 16 billion (about US$530 million). As of March 2012, RVC-backed funds hold a portfolio of 139 companies, with invested capital totaling RUB 12.1 billion (about US$390 million).
MassChallenge runs a $1M global startup accelerator and competition to catalyze the launch and success of high-growth, high-impact new businesses. The competition is open to any startup in the world, in any industry. MassChallenge is designed to identify, strengthen and facilitate funding for the world’s highest impact startups, and the judging criteria are focused on the entrant's proposed impact and their potential for success. For more information please visit www.masschallenge.org.