Bishop Ranch in San Ramon has announced the launch of an "innovation accelerator" designed to help entrepreneurs develop companies that use artificial intelligence (AI) or machine learning.
The accelerator is called BRIIA, short for Bishop Ranch Intelligence Innovation Accelerator. It will offer a free office space, resources and mentorship for participants in its 12-week accelerator programs.
"The Tri-Valley is a thriving community, evidenced by the innovative companies and tech talent residing at Bishop Ranch," said Les Schmidt, executive director of BRIIA and an entrepreneur who has led companies through various stages of their existence. He co-founded BRIIA along with Melissa Ross, who has led growth in healthcare analytics companies for the past 20 years.
"It's the right time and the right space and we look forward to attracting innovative technology companies to the area where they can turn ideas into real, scalable businesses," Schmidt added.
The first program will last from Sept. 18 through Dec. 7, ending on "Demo Day," which is open to the public.
Five seed-stage companies were chosen to participate in this first program: Acclivity addresses healthcare needs for patients with severe illnesses through a common, smart platform; datazoom is working to improve video distribution quality for broadcasters and media companies; Dotin hopes to better pinpoint users' "digital personality" for use in ecommerce, human resources and "friend finder" engines; Klinche manages construction payments through a cloud-based platform; and ThroughPut detects costly supply-chain bottlenecks to help businesses better operate.
The program focuses on product-market fit and acquiring customers and investors, along with providing a collaborative space for entrepreneurs. BRIIA itself will also host other events open to the community, starting with a free co-working day last Friday.
The next 12-week program will take place spring 2018, with applications accepted a few months before.
“We’re proud to house the Bay Area's first integrated data innovation accelerator and collaboration community,” said Alex Mehran, Jr., president and chief operating officer of Sunset Development Company, the developers of Bishop Ranch. “The Tri-Valley is home to some of Silicon Valley's best and brightest, and we look forward to fostering a community of entrepreneurship where they can innovate close to home.”