Tech

Paul How

IBM, Columbia University offer blockchain courses for startups

Tech giant IBM is collaborating with Columbia University to provide two accelerator programs for blockchain-based firms.

The accelerators “will offer entrepreneurs and blockchain network founders around the world access to the expertise and resources they need to establish blockchain networks,” according to IBM’s press release.

The two programs will each be for 10 startups, and will involve the participation of “technical, academic and business mentors from IBM and Columbia.”

“The goal of these programs is to help network founders develop their ideas into sustainable and scalable companies offering blockchain solutions. For those already further along in their journey, the programs are designed to help them achieve scale and build successful business networks,” the statement from IBM read.

As part of the courses, students will have access to IBM’s agile design workshops as well as use IBM’s Cloud technology. They will also be connected to researchers and students from the university.

The Columbia Blockchain Launch Accelerator is for pre-seed, idea-stage companies with affiliations with either Columbia or any other university based in New York City, and will be held for eight weeks.

The IBM Blockchain Accelerator, on the other hand, is for later-stage growth companies. It will take place both in New York and San Francisco, and also be held for eight weeks.

Columbia Blockchain Launch Accelerator Executive Director Satish Rao said, “Early- and late-stage teams will undoubtedly benefit from IBM’s technology resources, expertise and established network coupled with Columbia’s ground-breaking research and talent in blockchain and data transparency, all while benefiting from rapidly growing NYC blockchain communities.”

IBM Blockchain Accelerator Managing Director David Post said, “The possibilities presented by blockchain technology are seemingly endless, and we are seeing strong dedication by technical talent to build game-changing applications.”

IBM has been an active player in the blockchain industry, acquiring numerous blockchain-based patents such as for the recording of scientific research and for security systems. It has also partnered with both startups and more established institutions in a variety of industries, to promote food safety and more efficient supply chains, among other things.

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