Blackberry, AP govt plan to set up startup incubation centre in Vizag

Blackberry, AP govt plan to set up startup incubation centre in Vizag

Canadian handset maker Blackberry in association with the Information Technology department of Andhra Pradesh government is planning to set up a startup incubation centre in Vizag.

Talking to Deccan Herald, BlackBerry India Director (Alliances and Business Development) Annie Mathew said, “We are working on a set-up similar to a startup village and a Blackberry innovation centre (Rubus Labs) is being planned for Vizag in Andhra Pradesh on invitation from the department of IT to help setup an ecosystem.”

Startup Village, the telecom incubator in Kerala, jointly by the National Science and Technology Entrepreneurship Development Board (NSTEDB) under the Department of Science and Technology (DST) of the central government and the Kerala government-run Technopark, in collaboration with MobME Wireless, was inaugurated last year.

Mathew also said that the company is looking at localised apps through various centres across India to develop applications relevant to the local community.

Blackberry had partnered with Startup Village in Kochi to establish their first ever innovation zone for BlackBerry in Asia Pacific known as Rubus Labs that acts as a startup incubation centre and showcases the latest innovation from Blackberry.

Rubus Labs hosts developer activities like BlackBerry Hackathons and Bar Camps, besides conducting training sessions across the 126 engineering colleges in Kerala under the BlackBerry BASE (BlackBerry Apps by Student Entrepreneurs) program using the campus outreach network of Startup Village.

“The lab in Vizag would be on similar lines we would take the learning from Rubus Labs in Kochi to implement it in Vizag.”

The company has also launched a virtual internship programme and has selected 18 students from the applications received across Hyderabad, Kochi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai and Delhi.

“Blackberry developer evangelists are supporting them in their endeavour virtually,” Mathew explained.

At present, the company has close to 46,000 registered developers, compared to about 4,000 developers three years back. About 10-12 per cent of the apps going into the Blackberry AppWorld have come from India.

No comment was available from the IT department of the Andhra Pradesh government as an email sent to Secretary to Govt (Information Technology and Communications department) Sanjay Jaju remained unanswered.

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