Startup engagement
Challenger AI accelerator

Challenger AI is an international acceleration program focused on Digital & AI/ML-based startups. The program is initiated and run by CIVITTA and Radar Tech to foster innovations in Ukraine and internationally. Challenger AI was first launched in December 2021 and aimed to select up to 10 startup teams for the 3-month equity-free online program with top-notch international mentors and networking opportunities with investors and leading corporates to boost startups.


The open call for AI/ML & digital startups started with promotional events, such as two Ideathons with challenges to solve real cases from partner companies MHP, FUIB, and SoftServe. However, the selection was disrupted by the russian invasion of Ukraine.

We relaunched the program in September 2022. Out of 112 applicants, 25 were chosen for the pre-acceleration bootcamp, which included a pitching workshop, five mentorship sessions with different mentors for each team, and a pitching session for the jury to assess the startup’s suitability for the program. To be selected, startups needed to demonstrate their ability to integrate AI/ML and digital solutions, and have at least an MVP, a dedicated team, and potential for social impact. Ultimately, the program selected 8 startup teams to participate in the Challenger AI Accelerator.

Each startup team was involved in 13 informative sessions, 2 startup roasts events with investors and corporate representatives, 15+ hours of individual mentorship with a lead mentor, and additional technical mentorship. Mentors and trainers represented leading companies and thriving startups, including Cambridge Innovation Center, NVIDIA, Reface, SoftServe, Fuelfinance, and Change Ventures.

The culmination of the acceleration program was marked by the Demo Day held in Kyiv, where the participating teams presented their innovative solutions to a distinguished jury, renowned investors, and esteemed guests.

112 applications in total for acceleration;
13 sessions held during the accelerator program;
8 acceleration finalists;
2 startups have been selected for acceleration programs by our partners NVIDIA and Intel.