Google announced on Feb. 17 phase two of financing for the Google Support Fund that would provide a total of $10 million in grants, without the need to attract capital, to selected Ukrainian startups to “create a basis for economic recovery after the war.”

Successful applicants under the program would receive up to $100,000 in equity-free funding, as well as “Google mentoring support, product support, and $300,000 in Google Cloud credits,” according to an official blog post by Agnieszka Hrynievych-Bienek, senior director for Startups at Google.

Applications for the program will open later this year.

“This practical assistance is aimed at enabling Ukrainian entrepreneurs to maintain and develop their businesses, strengthen their communities and create a foundation for post-war economic recovery,” said Hrynievych-Bienek.

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The Google for Startups Ukraine Support Fund was created in March 2022, which Hrynievych-Bienek said has provided 58 recipients with $5 million in non-equity grants, and “$15.8 million in follow-on funding, achieved 100% revenue growth and significantly increased the number of jobs.”

“Many of them, such as Skyworker.ai and Mindly, use artificial intelligence to create economic opportunities; and several have received recognition from global experts, for example, Zeely, whose founders were included in the Forbes Europe 30 Under 30 list,” she said.

Ukraine Rushes to Create AI-Enabled War Drones
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Ukraine Rushes to Create AI-Enabled War Drones

Ukraine hopes a rollout of AI-enabled drones across the front line will help it overcome increasing signal jamming by the Russians as well as enable UAVs to work in larger groups.

Prior to the full-scale invasion, Ukraine had produced numerous notable startups that have since made a name for themselves in the global market.

The startup scene continued to develop despite the ongoing war, which also brought about a variety of defense tech startups – including drones and electronic warfare system makers – aimed to bolster Ukraine’s domestic defense industry.

However, it is unlikely that Google’s funds would be granted to defense tech startups.

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