Sberbank to invest in business ideas of its employees
7 Dec '18
Sberbank has launched the second wave of its Sber#Up in-house accelerator. All employees of Sberbank Group were invited to take part in the project: more than 300,000 employees of the bank and the ecosystem’s companies.
They all can take part in the accelerator, regardless of work experience and position. The only condition is a ready prototype or detailed business idea for the project. Preference will be given to applications with MVPs that can be carried out in the 13-week acceleration period. Having a project team of like-minded individuals is a significant advantage.
This past spring, 15,000 of the bank’s employees took part in the first pilot wave of the in-house accelerator. As a result, six winning teams received from Sberbank an offer to deploy their projects within the bank’s ecosystem. It was decided to make the program permanent to achieve better results: Sber#Up will be held twice a year, which will let the bank actively work with new business ideas.
Lev Khasis, First Deputy Chairman of the Executive Board, Sberbank:
“With the corporate venture area, companies usually purchase start-ups on the markets. We, however, have decided to look inside and suggested that our employees carry out their business projects.
Every day they work with retail and corporate clients and interact with partners; so they have excellent knowledge of the needs and demands of the market. In addition, the employees of the bank’s subsidiaries are invited to take part in the program; they have adequate expertise in related areas such as telemedicine, e-commerce, recreational services, entertainment and other areas.
We expect to see decent products that will fundamentally extend the possibilities of our ecosystem as a result of the accelerator.”
Applications should be submitted by December 23. Then experts will select 35 teams that will participate in the acceleration. During the program, the participants will have to prove that there is demand for their products; they are expected to study the market, launch an MVP, and make their first sales. Invited experts who possess entrepreneurial experience will work with the teams. This is a real possibility for employees of Sberbank and its subsidiaries to not only broaden their expertise in different areas, but also try their hand at business.
A demo day will be held at the end of the accelerator at which Sberbank’s top managers and invited venture investors will choose the strongest teams. The organizers will then offer the winners to either create a start-up using Sberbank’s investments or develop the project in a division of Sberbank or at a subsidiary.