Microsoft has announced the launch of BizSpark Plus program to provide boost to the Indian startup ecosystem. It is a global program to help software startups succeed by giving them access to Microsoft software development tools and connecting them with key industry players, including investors. Program also provides market visibility to startups.
Eligibility criteria for BizSpark Plus program:
- Startup must be privately held; they should be less than 5 years old
- Startup must have a less than $1 Mn revenue annually
- Each startup should be a member of selected Accelerator or VC firm
Microsoft will be partnering with 13 startup accelerators in the country including 91Springboard, Reliance GenNext, Zone Startups and Pitney Bowes among others. The program, in addition to open source friendly Azure, will provide free software, developer tools, and technical support to help startups be successful.
Under this program, company will offer $120k every year of free Azure Cloud services to each of the qualified startups who can use $10k worth of credits every month, to invest in Microsoft services to power their business.
Globally, Microsoft is partnering with 150 startup accelerators in 47 countries to deploy this program. India, with its vibrant startup ecosystem, is a key country for Microsoft. In addition to Azure services, startups will receive a full suite of development, test software and tools such as Visual Studio, Windows and Office.
Rajinish Menon, Director, Microsoft Ventures India, said, “Azure provides the productivity, security, analytics and scalability that startups need to quickly build and grow their businesses. We believe that Microsoft’s Azure Cloud is leading the way for startups and enterprises alike, with the most simple and complete cloud experience available.”
These initiatives are in line with Microsoft’s long-term commitment to contribute to a Digital India. The company has initiated multiple activities to drive digital empowerment of the Indian youth and communities. Aimed at preparing ‘Skilled India’, Digital India Hackathons are being held across 17 campuses in India, targeting over 4000 students. This series of hackathons are aimed at encouraging and inspiring youth to start thinking like challengers, learn to continuously adapt and work on ideas and solutions that address societal issues.
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