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VC firm Peak XV welcomes Australian and Indian startups in its ninth cohort

Peak XV, a prominent venture capital firm, has just unveiled the ninth cohort of its renowned accelerator and incubation program known as Surge.

This latest cohort introduces a total of 13 early-stage startups, with a notable presence of seven originating from India. In this impressive cohort, 32 visionary founders are leading the charge, spearheading their respective innovative companies into the global entrepreneurial arena.

What truly distinguishes this group is their unwavering focus on cutting-edge technology, with an impressive 75% of the startups dedicated to developing solutions for global markets. A remarkable highlight is the inclusion of two pioneering Australian startups, Mercu and Relevance AI.

This strategic move not only underlines Peak XV’s commitment to fostering innovation but also symbolizes the firm’s expansion into the dynamic Asia-Pacific region. Surge 09 stands as the inaugural cohort following Peak XV’s rebranding from Sequoia India & Southeast Asia, marking a significant step forward in its mission.

The overarching mission of Surge remains clear: to empower early-stage startups to create lasting international enterprises with the potential to reshape their respective industries. This forward-thinking cohort represents a diverse blend of companies originating from India, Singapore, and, for the first time, Australia. It serves as a testament to the rapid strides these nations have made in emerging technologies, such as AI, deep tech, and the digital economy.

One standout startup in this cohort is Relevance AI, a visionary machine learning company with a mission to revolutionize how businesses operate. Their aim is to facilitate the creation of AI-powered workflows without the need for coding. The founders, Daniel Vassilev and Jacky Koh, have recognized a unique opportunity to assist developer teams in deploying and integrating AI across a multitude of business functions, attracting prominent clients from sectors like SaaS, e-commerce, education, and gaming.

Another compelling addition to Surge 09 is Mercu, an employee engagement platform with a dedicated focus on empowering the often-overlooked “deskless” workforce, which constitutes a substantial portion of the global labor market. Founded by Australians Elliott Gibb and Jascha Zittel, who are based in Singapore, Mercu is on a mission to enable companies to recruit, train, and engage their frontline teams, leveraging existing chat apps to connect, onboard, and enhance the skills of employees on a global scale.

Rajan Anandan, the Managing Director of Peak XV Partners and Surge, reflects on this new venture, stating, “As we kick start new company-building journeys with our Surge 09 founders, it is clear that we are witnessing the incredible growth of AI and deep tech innovation, as well as the abundant talent in these sectors emerging from APAC. We are thrilled to be at the frontlines of innovation alongside our ambitious founders, who are leveraging their expertise to chart new ground in exciting, emerging technologies.”

The curated community of startups within the Surge program now boasts nine cohorts, comprising over 330 founders and an impressive 140 startups, spanning more than 16 diverse sectors, all achieved within the span of just five years. To date, Surge startups have collectively secured over $2 billion in follow-on funding post-Surge, highlighting the program’s tangible impact on the entrepreneurial ecosystem.

Surge 09 commenced its transformative journey just last week, with founders diving into a rigorous 16-week hybrid program focused on the intricate art of company building. A unique feature of the program is its esteemed roster of mentors, industry leaders who generously share their personal experiences and valuable insights, all driven by a deep commitment to giving back to the founder community.

Past Surge speakers and mentors have included notable figures such as William Tanuwijaya (Tokopedia/GoTo), Siu Rui Quek (Carousell), Patrick Collison (Stripe), Nitin Kamath (Zerodha), Kunal Shah (CRED), Gaurav Munjal (Unacademy), Sanjeev Bikhchandani (Info Edge), Amrish Rau (Pinelabs), Chatri Sityodtong (One Championship), Andre Soelistyo (GoTo), Vidit Aatrey (Meesho), Jaspreet Singh (Druva), and Girish Mathrubootham (Freshdesk).

For the full breakdown of Surge 09 companies, please refer to the Appendix below. To learn more about Surge 09, please head to our blog post, and find out more about each Surge 09 company here

No.CompanyFoundersDescription1StealthAn AI platform that helps software teams increase productivity by providing contextual answers for their codebase.2DozerMatteo Pelati and Vivek Gudapuri Dozer is an open-source data infrastructure platform that helps data scientists and engineers build highly scalable, real-time data APIs in minutes. 3ElivaasKaran Miglani and Ritwik KhareElivaas is a tech-driven villa and luxury apartment management company that allows owners to monetize, monitor, and maintain their vacation homes in India.4Ethereal MachinesKaushik Mudda and Navin JainEthereal Machines is an advanced manufacturing company that produces precision engineering components through its proprietary multi-axis  computer numerical control (CNC) machines.5Horizon Quantum ComputingJoe FitzsimonsHorizon Quantum Computing makes software development tools to unlock the potential of quantum computing hardware. 6InCoreArjun Menon, Gautam Doshi, GS Madhusudan, and Neel GalaInCore is a fabless semiconductor startup that focuses on building RISC-V-based processor solutions for industries, including industrial automation and consumer electronics.7MercuElliott Gibb and Jascha ZittelMercu is an employee engagement platform for companies to hire, train, and engage with their frontline teams.8MindgroveSharan Srinivas J and Shashwath T RMindgrove designs cost-effective and scalable microprocessor technology in India for the global semiconductor market. The company designs System-on-Chips (SoCs), which are integrated circuits that combine all the elements of an electronic device onto a single chip instead of separate components.9NeurowyzrPang Sze Yunn and Navdeep Vij SinghNeurowyzr is a healthtech company that specialises in developing state-of-the-art technologies to mitigate early brain decline.10NewtracePrasanta Sarkar and Rochan SinhaNewtrace is a climate tech startup that manufactures innovative electrolyzers to produce green hydrogen efficiently and affordably.  11Pix.aiAlvin Li, Raven Gao, and Veronica LiaoPix.ai is an AI-powered anime art generator. The platform equips users with a range of tools and character generation templates to create personalised anime art.12Relevance AI Daniel Vassilev and Jacky Koh Relevance AI is a machine learning startup on a mission to help companies build an AI workforce that automates workflows with no code.13ZeroK Mudit Krishna Mathur, Varun Ramamurthy, Samyukktha Thirumeni, Shivam Nagar ZeroK is an AI platform that helps developers troubleshoot production incidents faster. ZeroK is an Observability copilot that intelligently performs checks to guide developers to root causes faster, reducing downtime.

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