Telefónica, through its open innovation initiative Wayra, today launched a global call for startups working on disruptive technologies with Open Gateway based applications.
Open Gateway is the industry initiative presented by the GSMA at the Mobile World Congress, currently taking place in Barcelona, where operators open access to their telco capabilities to transform their networks into interoperable and programmable platforms through open and standardised APIs (Application Programming Interface). This facilitates and simplifies access to digital services for developers and creators.
Under the name Open Gateway Activation Programme, Telefónica seeks to accelerate innovation in the telco sector and boost the growth of selected startups. To achieve this goal, those companies that manage to access will have free and privileged access to the Early Adopter Programme (EAP) launched by Telefónica in collaboration with Microsoft Azure, AWS, Google Cloud and Vonage in which developers will have exclusive access to a new generation of telco services through open APIs, interoperable and with real use cases.
The selected startups will also have potential investment opportunities of between €100,000 and €5 million through Telefónica’s open innovation investment vehicles. Either through Wayra, Telefónica’s initiative with a presence in nine countries designed to scale and invest in startups that are ready to scale under a Venture Capital model and bring innovation to any part of the world, or through Telefónica Ventures, the Corporate Venture Capital vehicle for strategic investments in product-market-fit and growth phases of the company.
Telefónica will also offer startups that access the Open Gateway Activation Programme business development opportunities and access to its network of B2B and B2C customers. Enabling the possibility of running pilot projects, building use cases, deploying solutions, being part of the company’s showrooms and demo centres or even becoming one of its partners.
Chema Alonso, Chief Digital Officer of Telefónica, announced the launch of the Open Gateway Activation Programme during his speech today at 4YFN in the ‘Net for Dev’ talk. During his intervention he said:
“Open Gateway is an initiative driven by the telco sector with the participation of the entire ecosystem, including startups. With this call we are offering them the opportunity to work closer than ever to Telefónica and build technology on our capabilities and the telco industry in general by having access to the EAP that we are launching in collaboration with large companies in the digital ecosystem”.
The call for applications will be open until 31 March. Anyone who is interested can register through this form.