Target Accelerator Program, the city-based startup incubation program of American retail group Target's India subsidiary, on Friday announced the graduation of its second batch of five start-ups. The five startups - Synapse, Whodat, Wazzat, Torch and Visarity - focus on mobile-based applications to enhance shopping experience of customers. Solutions developed by these startups engage customers while shopping at retail outlets. "This initiative has given start-ups as well as us an opportunity to significantly learn from each other about products and new solutions in the retail space," said Navneet Kapoor, president and managing director, Target India. "We are looking forward to a continued partnership with this ecosystem." While Synapse enables push notifications of offers and other informations to customers on an Android lock screen of his/her phone, Whodat provides an augmented reality app that allows people to visualise merchandise in their homes in virtual reality. Visarity has developed an in-browser interactive 3D solution for apps, ads and virtual reality and Wazzat is a visual search engine developed to assist customers in finding similar products during an online search. Torch is a cloud-based solution that offers smart measurements and engagement for offline retailers. All these start-ups had been running their pilots in various enterprises of Target for the past four months.
The four-month Target Accelerator Program, which claims to be a specialised retail accelerator, focuses primarily on areas such as omnichannel, digital marketing, mobile, supply chain and data. The programme was started in February 2014. The second batch joined the accelerator programme in October 2014. Kapoor said the current batch of five start-ups were selected from more than 1,000 applications. Target Accelerator Program has already started accepting applications for the third batch that will begin in June.