Village Capital

IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator 2023

Supporting impact-driven startups working on the intersection of technology, data and impact


About the Program

IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator is an investment-readiness and technical mentorship program, run in partnership with Village Capital and IBM. The program supports impact-focused startups leveraging highly sensitive data to improve the quality of, and access to: digital, financial, and healthcare services. The IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator has already supported 146 early-stage startups across the world and is now open to applications for Cohort 6 and Friends of Hyper Protect (FoHP) Class III. Check out our past cohort companies here

No equity will be taken in their company by IBM or Village Capital as part of the program.

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Apply to the Program

The 2023 program will expand to support more companies working on impactful Datatech products, and consist of three components:

  • The IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator, HPA (Up to 15 companies): 1 year of technical mentorship from IBM (including up to $120,000 of free IBM cloud credits), access to IBM’s network & a 3 month intensive Village Capital Investment Readiness Accelerator with bespoke mentor and investor matching. 

  • Friends of Hyper Protect, FoHP (Up to 30 companies): 1 year of quarterly technical mentorship from IBM (including up to $120,000 of free IBM cloud credits), access to IBM’s network & 3 months of tailored business support from Village Capital with a focus on milestone planning and investor matchmaking. 

  • The DataTech for Good Coalition: A coalition on Village Capital’s Abaca platform that matches DataTech for good startups with like-minded investors and peers.

Applications are now closed.


Who Should Apply?

Village Capital and IBM will identify, vet, and recruit 45 companies using highly sensitive personal data to increase access to digital solutions, including -but not limited to- Fintech, Datatech, Digital Assets, Edtech, Insuretch, and other solutions. The virtual Accelerator will take place between September and December 2023 and there will be continued support from IBM into 2024. 

If managing sensitive data is at the core of your business and security on the public cloud is a priority for you, then this accelerator is for you! To be eligible, you must be: 

  • Legally incorporated as a for-profit entity

  • Using Personally Identifiable Information to increase access to digital, financial, or healthcare services

  • Under $10 million in yearly revenue

  • Less than 10 years old

  • Have good traction (this is not limited to revenue, but can include successful pilot studies, number of users, and/or strategic partnerships)

  • A founder/member of the exec team must be able to commit to attending every session. (~40 hours total between September and December 2023, 3 hour sessions)

Problem Statement

From 2010 to 2020 the volume of data created, captured, and consumed increased by an astounding 5,000%, with 90% of all data created in the last two years. This flood of new data streams also raises potential exploitation and security issues around data exposure, and raises concerns for individuals and businesses around data protection, privacy, security, and regulatory compliance. 

Digital solutions leveraging data are transforming access to essential services by improving service delivery, reducing costs, and increasing accessibility. Can data collection create more inclusive solutions that improve access without compromising individuals ownership of their data?

As the data landscape continues to evolve, businesses handling users’ personal information must act as data custodians to maintain privacy, keep client data protected, and acknowledge data ownership is the sole right of users. Without secure data ownership, clients, and stakeholders lose potential benefits from their data to businesses and restrict their ability to access better, more inclusive, and more valuable services.

Over the past four years, the IBM Hyper Protect Accelerator has worked with startups that utilize sensitive data and Personally Identifiable Information (PII) to create, improve, and increase users’ access to financial, healthcare, and other services. Solutions include unified APIs to foster financial inclusion in Africa, OpenAPIs to democratize access to affordable insurance in Latin America, blockchain-based solutions that increase financial transparency and efficiency, digital assets platforms that create opportunities for creators, and other digital solutions that touch on the intersection of technology, data, and impact.

Benefits startups will receive:



Build deep connections with other founders in your cohort and our larger Village Capital investor and alumni network.

Maze mentoring


1 year of on-demand technical mentorship, where companies get access to IBM’s network of subject matter experts, partners, technicians, go-to-market support, co-marketing, and branding.

Pen and pencil


Join interactive sessions tailored to help your company identify early milestones and prepare for your next round of capital.



Work with an investment analyst who will coach you 1:1 on building a financial model, identifying unit economics, and using financial metrics.

Alarm clock


Get featured on Village Capital’s program website and other collateral.

Best in class

IBM Cloud Credits

Access to up to $120,000 in IBM Cloud credits, up to $10,000 per month for the first year.

Program Timeline

May 15, 2023

Applications Open

July 15, 2023

Applications Close

September, 2023

Cohort Announced

October 18, 2023

IBM zDay

October - December, 2023

Program Workshops

Learn more about mentoring with Village Capital

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Do you take equity in your programs?


2. Do you require us to move to the cities of the program?


3. Can we get involved with IBM and Village Capital if we aren’t selected for the main accelerator?


4. Do you require us to migrate all of my workloads to the IBM Cloud?


5. Do you help provide resources to build our solution?