The BlackBerry Partners Fund was announced back at WES, and humming along quietly in the background, chatting with some 1,5000 hungry, young developers who wanted some of that $150 million investment fund.
[Kevin Talbot, RBC vice president and co-manager of the BlackBerry Partners Fund] says the unexpectedly large response from developers to the fund threw operations out of gear but says it is now back on track. ‘Since the fund was announced, we have been deluged with opportunities,’ he says. ‘We have lagged a little bit behind because of that.’
Progress is being made, as they will soon be announcing the first three to four companies to get $2-$5 million infusions. A new site will be launched on August 15th. to better inform interested parties about the opportunity and how to apply. With the iPhone App Store now in full swing, Apple’s $100M iFund is looking all the juicier to mobile developers, but there’s one thing that the BlackBerry Partners Fund has that iFund doesn’t – platform agnosticism. That’s right, you don’t have to develop for BlackBerry to get in on the fund, it just has to be mobile software. RIM is staying out of the decision-making process altogether, and leaving it to RBC and JLA to handle the meat and potatoes of the operation. Of course, if you’re chosen, RIM’s throwing in BlackBerry Alliance membership, which makes working on the platform all the easier. One of the partners had a great guest post on BerryReview that’s worth a read if you’re seriously interested in the fund. Keep an eye on www.blackberrypartnersfund.com for the big update.