Maruti Suzuki Turns into a Start-up Growth Hacker for Five Companies

One of the world’s most preferred and valuable car brand, Maruti Suzuki, is expanding its horizon in the startup ecosystem. According to the latest news brief, the Indian auto-giant has announced collaborating with startups – Enmovil, Docketrun, Eyedentify, Xane, and SenseGiz. This partnership includes the startups for proof of concept (PoC) under its MAIL Program. MAIL stands for the Mobility and Automobile Innovation Lab (MAIL) program, which is conceived to help PoCs toward real-time applications in the business and customer support.

What is Maruti Suzuki’s MAIL Initiative?

MAIL is an initiative by Maruti Suzuki to identify and bring together startups with innovative and cutting-edge solutions, to collaborate for open innovation in mobility and automobile space.

Through an extensive exercise involving a call for applications, thorough screening, and pitch sessions, five startups namely Enmovil, Docketrun, Eyedentify, Xane, and SenseGiz, were selected for cohort 1. These 5 startups presented their solutions at the Demo Day organized in New Delhi.

Maruti Suzuki India Limited MD & CEO, Mr Kenichi Ayukawa (fifth from right), along with the five startups selected under the Mobility & Automobile Innovation Lab (MAIL) program
Maruti Suzuki India Limited MD and CEO, Mr Kenichi Ayukawa (fifth from right), along with the five startups selected under the Mobility and Automobile Innovation Lab (MAIL) program

MAIL Prepares Users and Partners for the Disruptive Indian Market and Global Tech Scenario

MAIL initiative will help create value additions in the areas of logistics, IoT-based safety and monitoring, and plug and play solutions.

At the time of this announcement, Kenichi Ayukawa, Managing Director and CEO, Maruti Suzuki India Limited, stated –

“Indian automobile industry is at a crucial juncture. Several disruptions are taking place in the automobile and mobility space. Since inception Maruti Suzuki has strived to offer products and services that are ahead of regulations and match the needs of the evolving Indian customers, while retaining the interests of our stakeholders. We are optimistic that partnering with these startups, we will enter into a new era of mobility and automobile solutions.”

Kenichi added, “Our aim is to now work along with these startups and enhance scalability of the solutions. These intelligent solutions will help enhance customer experience, among others.”

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What Each of these Startups Do?

  • SenseGiz- The IoT solutions provider actually has a legacy of building and providing an intelligent mesh network of their proprietary COIN sensors, COIN collects information related to the condition and indoor location data and delivers this information to the Cloud. In this context, Maruti Suzuki could leverage COIN and other SenseGiz products to enhance the in-car experience with respect to auto-temperature controls, motion control, vibration dampners, self-driving systems, and advanced passenger safety features that could boost its sale in the domestic and foreign markets.
  • Eyedentify- The AI company provides customized IoT and Fleet Management software platform for advanced vehicle-tracking surveillance, data analytics, and visualization.
  • – Xane provides AI Chatbot solutions for surveys, employee experience, and customer feedback.
  • Enmovil – A Business Intelligence platform driven by a “Connected Asset” ecosystem that maximizes Operational Efficiency from the First-to-Last mile.
  • Docketrun – Branded as an AI marketplace that helps other startups and enterprises catalyze their AI journeys for Digital Transformation, Docketrun is unique in its proposition. DocketRun provides AI building stacks through pre-built and custom AIOps/MLOps technologies. The current set of customers includes players from the retail, IoT, Content, and Healthcare markets.

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How the Challenge Unfolded on the Demo Day

As part of the official press release, SenseGiz, Xane and Eyedentify were ranked as top-three startups. They would immediately get an opportunity to undertake a paid Proof-of-Concept with Maruti Suzuki for actual business use. SenseGiz won the challenge during the presentations on Demo Day. One of the customers includes Toytota – the world’s most preferred automotive brand.

The journey for these startups was a long, exhaustive one. Maruti Suzuki identified the 5 startups at least 3-4 months ago. Post selection into the first cohort, all the 5 startups underwent an extensive 3 months long acceleration program.

Here, they were mentored by various experts from both domestic as well as an international startup ecosystem. Concurrently, they received guidance from domain experts at Maruti Suzuki. The startups were given access to Maruti Suzuki’s testbed and facilities to understand the current scenario and suggest solutions to fit business needs.

The company didn’t specify how it will enable startups to build their Marketing and Sales Technology stacks to improve customer experience and expand into current and new marketplaces through Maruti Suzuki’s partnership programs.

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