Global technology giant Microsoft on Thursday announced the launch of a $500 million program that delivers access to technology, go-to-market and community benefits to help startups grow their customer and revenue base. “We are committing $500 million over the next two years to offer joint sales engagements with startups, along with access to our technology, and new community spaces that promote collaboration across local and global ecosystems,” said the company in a note. While the company did not give out any specific numbers for investments in India, Microsoft India MD Anant Maheshwari told Business Standard that Microsoft has been part of the startup ecosystem in a big way from early stages right up to when the companies start achieving full scale. “We see start-ups and unicorns as customers. It’s a focus area for us to do a lot of work with these companies in India as many of them are now reaching scales where they are looking for tech solutions beyond pure play infrastructure,” said Maheshwari. He added that Microsoft’s accelerator in Bengaluru is amongst the most successful startup accelerators across the country and it works with many different companies in the early stage of their development. Microsoft is deeply engaged with the developer community to provide capabilities and toolkits to create their offerings and products, he said. The Microsoft for Startups program will provide startups with up to $120,000 in free Azure credits, enterprise grade technical support and development tools like supporting the languages of their choice, such as Node.js, Java and . NET. In addition, qualified startups will also get access to productivity and business applications, including Office 365 and Microsoft Dynamics 365. The program will connect qualified startups with new customers and channel partners through over 40,000 Microsoft sales representatives and hundreds of thousands of partners, build on a cloud platform to connect them to existing and new Microsoft initiatives. “The overall startup ecosystem in India is maturing.
Source: Business Standard