the Program
Armenia Startup Academy Traction Program is an intensive mentorship-based program designed for companies that have managed to gain initial traction, and need help in intensifying it. We partner with top mentors to establish the most appropriate growth framework, leveraging mentors’ deep expertise in Growth Hacking and Sales. As well, the program aims to support companies with expanding to international markets and fundraising, including fundraising strategy and deck development.
The program is initiated by Catalyst Hi-Tech and Entrepreneurship Development Foundation; and supported by EU4Business “Technology Development for Armenia” project operating under the EU4Business initiative of the European Union implemented by German Development Cooperation-GIZ. Viva-MTS, Armenia’s leading mobile network operator, joins the initiative as a corporate partner and supporter.





Armenia Startup Academy Traction Program

Support in growth hacking strategy development
Implementation of growth hacks in initial expansion stages
Access to international expertise
Sales Enablement
Support in sales strategy development
Sales plan for target markets 
Access to industry-specific sales practices 
Need assessment and
milestone planning
Support in fundraising
strategy development
Involvement of well-connected experts and mentors

Program Components

 Each company will have an individual development program tailored to its needs, including weekly or bi-weekly meetings with experts to work on the following components
Growth Hacking
Traction Program Coaches

Shahan Khoshafian

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Shahan Khoshafian has 10+ years of experience in enterprise business development, sales, marketing, and product development across industries such as Media & Entertainment, Mobile, AI, CRM, & Blockchain. He is currently the Co-Founder & CEO at Startup Assistant and the host of the On with Shahan podcast series.


Alec Beglarian

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Alec Beglarian is a digital marketing, branding, user experience and marketing consulting specialist with 15+ years of experience with a core expertise in email marketing. Alec is the Founder and Email Marketing & Deliverability Consultant at Previously, he was the Founder and CEO of an email service provider - RedCappi, which was acquired in late 2015.


Narine Kotikyan 

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Narine Kotikyan has 12+ years of experience in marketing and innovation management, growth hacking, and community building. Narine is currently the Director at Yerevan Chapter of Startup Grind. Previously, she was the Head of Growth at DevTeam.Space, and Head of Marketing and Growth Hacking at TeamViewer.


Tanya Kandralyan

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Tanya has 10+ years of account management experience with a demonstrated history of working in the software industry. Currently, she is an Account Executive at New Relic. Previously, she ran Sales Development at Zenefits and AdTonik.


Dork Alahydoian

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Dork Alahydoian is a senior digital product and media executive with 20+ years of experience in building and managing cross-functional teams and developing digital products. In the last couple of years, he helped to build the digital subscription business at the New York Times. He is currently an independent digital strategy and product consultant.


Paul Nadjarian

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Paul Nadjarian is the General Manager at CARFAX service shops division. He is an entrepreneur, product manager and mentor with 20+ years of experience, with extensive background in the auto industry and the internet. Previously he was the Founder and CEO of Mojo Motors Marketplace, Director of eBay Motors Marketplace, and Senior Manager Dealer Solutions at Ford.

Hamlet Azarian

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Hamlet Azarian has 20+ years of experience of setting up growth strategies in software, retail, publishing, financial, healthcare, and consumer survey and insights. He has been a Senior Growth Advisor in international companies, including DISQO, CBDfx, Swift Engine, and Raydiant Screen Signage. Hamlet is the Founder of Retail Merchant Group, LLC and a Co-CEO at Azarian Brothers Consulting, Inc.


Zareh Baghdasarian

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Zareh Baghdasarian has 25+

years of experience of leading  growth-focused technology start-up companies. Previously, he was the Chairman, CEO, and Co-founder at Avata Intelligence (acquired by Procore Technologies) and co-founded Monterey Networkshe (acquired by Cisco Systems for $550M). Zareh holds 18 technology patents, and his inventions helped make various companies profitable.

Who can apply?

We are looking for startups that:

  Managed to gain early traction  (revenue/user base/launched product)
  Have raised a minimum of $20k funding in the form of grants,
    angel, VC financing, or bootstrapping
  Previously graduated from an incubation/pre-acceleration program*

*not mandatory, but preferable 

Selection Criteria
Team members’ track records
Scalability potential
Traction of the startup
Complementarity of the team composition


Info session
Application deadline
Selection results announcement

The 1-1 sessions will be conducted remotely*

May 25
June 15-16
June 29 - Sep 5
May 14
June 7
June 18
Sep 30


How does the ASA Traction Program differ from the Pre-Acceleration Program?

Our Pre-Acceleration Program works with prototype and MVP stage companies, guiding them through idea validation, customer development, go-to-market strategy development, and pitching. We designed the Traction Program for companies that have already launched products with notable traction. The goal is to increase said traction with intensive mentorship focused on elevating growth hacking, sales, and fundraising.

Is the Traction Program held in-house or remotely?

Following the outbreak of COVID-19, the Traction Program has adopted a hybrid format. 1:1 mentor meetings occur online, while meetups take place in-person with a fully remote option.

Does the Traction Program accept international startups?

The Armenian Startup Academy highly encourages participation from international startups.

What resources and opportunities will be provided during the program?

Selected teams will have access to the wide network of experienced domain professionals from Armenia Startup Academy community located in Armenia and abroad. The teams will be able to take advantage of our cloud infrastructure and service partnerships benefits.

What is the duration of the program?

The ASA Traction Program comprises 10 mentorship weeks followed by a Demo Day.

Where is the Armenia Startup Academy located?

The Armenia Startup Academy is based out of Hero House, a tech and entrepreneurship hub in the center of Yerevan.

What is the tuition fee for startups enrolled in the Traction Program?

Participation in the Traction Program is free of charge. It is our goal to provide promising ideas backed by competent and dedicated teams with the resources for success!

Do you request compensation from startups in the form of equity?

We currently do not ask equity of Traction Program participants; this is subject to change for upcoming batches.

Do you invest in the participating companies following Traction Program completion?

While we don’t personally invest, the ASA strives to connect participants with investors and funding opportunities.

Is the Traction Program open to ASA Pre-Acceleration Program alumni?

As the Pre-Acceleration Program is the predecessor of the ASA Pre-Acceleration Program, graduates of the former are more than welcome to apply given they fit the program criteria.

Who are the mentors involved in the Traction Program?

ASA Traction Program mentors are carefully selected, high-profile professionals and industry experts passionate about improving startups. We look for specialists experienced in B2B sales to Fortune 500 companies, growth hacking for scaled companies, strategic email marketing and sales, etc.