Amazon launches mentorship programme for startups, emerging brands

Amazon launches mentorship programme for startups, emerging brands
Photo Credit: 123RF.com
12 Apr, 2021

Ecommerce giant Amazon on Sunday announced the launch of a mentorship programme for startups and emerging brands that are part of the Amazon Launchpad initiative. 

Amazon Launchpad runs a supplemental acceleration programme for entrepreneurs and businesses on the ecommerce platform, as per the company website. 

Mentors from venture capital firms, including Fireside Ventures, DSG Consumer Partners, Elevation Capital and Tomorrow Capital have signed up for the programme, dubbed Amazon Mentor Connect, a statement said.  

The startups in the programme, it said, will have access to one-on-one mentorship with chosen mentors over a three-month period, knowledge sharing sessions, as well as networking opportunities with venture capitalists, industry veterans, and Amazon leaders. 

“Most of these startups are led by first time entrepreneurs who have the passion to drive a change, but don’t have the experience to deal with the breadth of challenges they face along the way. With Amazon Mentor Connect, we aim to create a support system to help startups unlock their potential by providing them with the right kind of mentoring that can help them scale their business, avoid blind spots, learn from experience of existing leaders, open new doors and help them unlock infinite possibilities for a Digital India,” Pranav Bhasin, director for micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) and selling partner experience at Amazon India, said. 

Started in December 2016, the Amazon Launchpad store currently has over 800 emerging brands, selling two lakh products across 30 categories. The popular categories include health and personal care, beauty and grooming, grocery and home products. 

The programme, as per the statement, will also be extended to winners of the Amazon Smbhav Entrepreneurship Challenge in the upcoming Amazon Smbhav summit.  

“The winners will be the first cohort of startups to receive the benefits associated with the Amazon Mentor Connect programme,” the statement said. 

The second edition of four-day Amazon Smbhav summit will be hosted from April 15 for small and medium businesses (SMBs), startups and entrepreneurs in sectors such as manufacturing, retail, logistics and IT/ITeS. 

Additionally, the programme will give participating venture capital firms an opportunity to observe startups at the grassroots level, the statement said. 

“We are looking to understand grassroots level challenges, understand trends and identify ways of solving these problems for emerging brands...,” Prayag Mohanty, senior vice president, Fireside Ventures, said.