Dubbed Microsoft for Startups, the newly announced programme will provide growing businesses with the tools needed to achieve scale and success. The tech giant has committed $500m to Microsoft for Startups over a two-year period. As part of the initiative, startups will receive support around tech, market options, sales advice, community spaces on a local and global level to encourage collaboration with other companies. Charlotte Yarkoni, corporate VP of growth and ecosystems at Microsoft, said: “We’re excited to announce Microsoft for Startups. Startups are an indisputable innovation engine, and Microsoft is partnering with founders and investors to help propel their growth.” With some 40,000 sales representatives and partners in the hundreds of thousands, Microsoft is confident it will facilitate solid connections between startups on the programme and new customers and channels, driving use of Microsoft cloud tech. “The program provides dedicated resources to prepare startup marketing and sales teams to effectively sell their cloud solutions to enterprise organisations in partnership with Microsoft’s global sales organisation and partner ecosystem,” continued Yarkoni. Microsoft for Startups claims to support companies of all growth stages across ecosystems worldwide, ensuring all startups will receive help. Those on the scheme will receive as much as $120,000 of Azure credits, enterprise technical help, development tools in various languages, and office support. The reach of the firm’s Microsoft Reactors, physical co-working areas that bring together entrepreneurs, developers and investors, will expand over the coming weeks to help Microsoft for Startups succeed on the collaboration front. Locations in London, Sydney, Tel Aviv, Berlin, Shanghai and Beijing are all set for launch in the next month, building on Reactors in US cities including Redmond, Seattle, San Francisco and New York. In addition to this, startups will also have access to growth programmes through Microsoft Scaleup and investments through Microsoft Ventures, which traditionally funds Series A to Series D rounds. “Startups inspire us by pushing the envelope of the possible and building products that improve our personal and professional lives. Microsoft is excited to partner with startups to empower every person and organisation on the planet,” Yarkoni concluded.
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