How a Visionary Trio from Denver-Boulder Built
Silicon Valley’s Leading Marketplace for Corporations & Startups by Hiring a Dedicated Team from Digicorp
To build a robust, secure & experience-led online marketplace for corporate entities to search & connect with startups providing innovative solutions.
298,000+ Startups Indexed, 6.7 Million+ Patents Tracked, 2,300 Technology Collections, 107 APIs Wrapped into a Microservices App.
Project closed with 100% client satisfaction.
A Grand Vision for an Open Innovation Platform
Back in 2013, Iterate’s founders were serving as board members for an Eastern European Accelerator. At that time, Cloud, AI, and SaaS were radically transforming the global business and technology scenario. The leadership team came together with the singular mission of enabling the conversion of innovative tech ideas into digital products faster, better and at scale, and making these emerging tech solutions visible and accessible in an organized and curated manner to the leading corporations of the world.
The premise for this was simple – merely boosting the global innovation pipeline won’t work unless the corporate houses who demand these out-of-the-box solutions can access them and assimilate them with their in-house R&D in a hassle-free way.
A little over 3 years later, in December 2016, Iterate’s owners found the right partner in Digicorp to give wings to their dream product. By hiring our dedicated designers and developers, their vision soon became a reality. Here’s how we went about it.
Initial Discussions – Identifying Demand Gaps and Supply Challenges
At the very beginning, Iterate leadership team and Digicorp acknowledged that the problem at hand was three-fold:
- Firstly, executives and corporate leaders were looking for a low risk, less expensive, quick and systematic way to identify, adopt and expedite digital innovation initiatives at scale as a part of their strategic planning & R&D.
- Secondly, technology innovators were struggling with the innovation workflow – like market and tech landscape analysis, emerging tech evaluation, and accessing a plethora of microservices for rapid-fire experimentation and prototyping.
- Thirdly, startups and emerging tech developers lacked organized visibility with their primary target segment – i.e. corporations and their leaders.
Solutioning - Catering to Demand and Supply Ends with a Two-Pronged Innovation
To address the above challenges, a two-pronged innovation emerged – namely, Iterate Evaluation Cloud and Iterate Execution Cloud. Digicorp helped to build the MVP of Iterate.ai from scratch encompassing both these modules.
The Evaluation Cloud has the following features:
- A marketplace for corporations to search, discover and curate best-fit startups and tech solutions matching their unique needs.
- Option for corporate leaders document their challenges and find appropriate solutions from these emerging tech startups.
- Powerful AI-driven search engine which uses a neural network to create smart associations between the startups in the Iterate database and corporate needs, resulting in the most qualified solution – the needle in the haystack.
- Layered search & auto-search that makes scouting, organizing and grading startups a highly organized process.
- Back-end curator engine to locate startups based on inputs and invite the selected startups to work on specific problem.
- A visualization module that generates a diagram of the curated startups based on their technology or market segment.
- Seamless Third-Party Integrations like Startup.io, LinkedIn, CrunchBase and Angel List.
- Demandware Cartridge – a solution that enables enterprises to add their scripting code on any third-party website with the cartridge.
The Execution Cloud has the following features:
- An integrated approach to identify global trends and monitor emerging technologies.
- Proactive innovation support to help bring prototypes to life and build production-ready digital applications 10x faster.
- Interplay – a microservices program built as a server-less application that acts as a middleware platform providing the simplest and quickest way to build complex applications.
- Startups can post their solutions to the problem statements posted by Corporate users and communicate with them.
Concluding Note: Our Approach and Technologies Used
We began by identifying the right features of the product to meet the needs of all the stakeholders We then identified the UI library and the key components to be integrated with their platform including third-party services like LinkedIn & Startup.io. Further, we also mapped several advanced features like automated market research and landscape diagrams for corporate enterprises. We assigned a cross-functional dedicated development team and followed the Scrum agile methodology. The team built a minimum viable product (MVP) for Iterate.ai within 90 days. After successfully validating the MVP in the market, we then developed a fool-proof selection process to help corporate executives identify the most suitable startups. The key technologies we used were CakePHP, MySQL and Bootstrap3. Today Iterate has over 298,000+ Startups Indexed, 6.7 Million+ Patents Tracked, 2,300 Technology Collections & 107 APIs Wrapped into a Microservices App.
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