Intending to expand its view on its Developer Circle programs and SheLeadsTech Innovation Hub, Facebook has announced its plans to launch three innovation hubs in India. Another move by the social media giant to penetrate further into the startup ecosystem of the country. The company had previously set up an innovation hub in Hyderabad in association with T-Hub. It is now looking for similar partnerships to establish its centres in Mumbai, Bengaluru, and New Delhi.
Facebook stated that it plans to extend meaningful support to Indian startups and entrepreneurs by offering some key programs. In the past year alone the company is said to have mentored over 200 startups in India. In 2019, the firm wants to work towards registering a substantial hike in this number.
The three innovation hubs due to be launched will cater to AR and VR technologies. The focus of the initiative also includes creating a platform for developers through Developers Circle, which was launched earlier in India. At present, the program spans across 15 cities with over 50,000 members. The target for 2019 is to reach out to 20 more cities and garner 100,000 plus developers as members. The SheLeadsTech initiative targets women entrepreneurs based in Tier 2 cities like Ahmedabad, Chandigarh, Guwahati, Coimbatore, Shillong, and Bhubaneswar. The crux behind the movement is to extend assistance to convert the ideas of these women entrepreneurs into startups. The program is spread across 24 cities at present and supports over 170 women entrepreneurs. The women receive mentorship and related resources through the program.
Facebook hopes to tap into the fast evolving and developing startup ecosystem of India to bring about innovations. It will have to be seen how the regulatory bodies draft policies to foster the plans the company has with regards to its ventures in India.