Facebook has announced that applications are open for ‘Facebook Accelerator: Commerce’, which is welcoming startup teams from Europe, Middle East and Africa who are developing e-commerce solutions. Such tools could be AI-powered catalogue management or immersive shopping experiences using AR; any solution that helps “bridge the gap between online and in-store experiences.” The new initiative will adapt the Facebook Accelerator program, which operates in 11 countries, to an entirely virtual format, providing startups with training, mentorship and support during the Covid-19 pandemic. The company hopes the adaptation allows it to “reach startups where they are based and train more people compared to a traditional, in-person program,” according to a press release. In that same release, the company says up to 30 startups from across EMEA will be selected to participate in the 12-week program. The tech giant does not take any equity from the startups involved, and afterward the participants become members of a global alumni network.
A second Commerce accelerator in Latin America is launching today as well.