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Wayra Telefonica Takes Synergy Worldwide

As anyone who’s involved in the startup world knows, startup accelerators are often mutually beneficial organizations: they help small companies get off the ground and simultaneously reap benefits.


A great example of a synergistic incubator is Wayra, an accelerator with the Spanish based company Telefónica that has “academies” in 9 countries: Colombia, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Peru, Venezuela, Chile, the United Kingdom and Spain.

The goal of Wayra Telefonica is to two-fold:

Help innovative startups get moving and assure that Telefónica is on the cutting edge of digital trends. Part of their brand (and their appeal) is the identical work spaces in all of their academies worldwide, in which the entrepreneurs have immediate access to everything they need to get their projects going. This gives them the space to get right to work, rather than having to run around searching for office space and other resources.

The startups working with Wayra also have access to a vast network of mentors, including individual mentors that the company carefully matches with the startup. That network, combined with extensive training ranging from how to start a startup to how to pitch to investors and even a trip to Silicon Valley—the hub of the startup world—results in a great environment for ideas to grow.

The Spanish Wayra is the latest academy to get off the ground. Their base is located in Telefónica’s original building, located on the Gran Via in Madrid. Most of the company is now based in newer building in another part of town, but Wayra felt the historical location was a better match for their mission as they see it as a the “soul of Telefónica.”

Ten startups are currently making things happen at Wayra’s Madrid Academy. Their products range from Mira! Musei, an app turning museum visits into an interactive experience with other visitors to Evomote, which turns your smartphone into a remote control and allows you to chat with friends and search for TV programs. Other products include Valioo, a company that gives money to the user’s favorite charity in exchange for customer reviews of partnering companies and Sezion, an app allowing musicians to work with other amateur musicians around the world.

The common link between all of these products is that they are all related to information and communications technology (ICTs), which is Telefónica’s main game. Wayra provides the entrepreneurs with access to Telefónica’s internal departments for support and mentoring, further enhancing the synergistic relationship. This is on top of all of the benefits of an awesome co-working space, individual mentorship, and the extensive training mentioned above. Oh, did we mention that Telefónica also invests up to 50,000 EU in each project?

With Wayra, Telefónica is taking a great approach to generating new and innovative products and ideas. In the short time that Wayra Academies have existed, they’ve figured out a model and a method that benefits them and the entrepreneurs they work with and they only seem to be growing worldwide. What more could you ask for?

Author : Emma McGowan

Emma is a proud native of Burlington, Vermont, who has lived in six different countries over the past two years. She's living and loving the global nomad life and writing about technology and startups everywhere she goes. Check out more of her writing about tech on (the more titillating stuff) KinkAndCode.. Follow her on Twitter @MissEmmaMcG.

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