Tech giant Microsoft is launching a programme named Microsoft for Startups to offer technology access and go-to-market and community benefits to early-stage firms.
"Microsoft is 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," the company said in a statement.
As part of the programme, Microsoft will help startups connect with new customers and channel partners through over 40,000 Microsoft sales representatives and connect them to resources via properties like Microsoft Reactors, Microsoft Ventures and Microsoft ScaleUp.
Microsoft Reactors are physical spaces where entrepreneurs, developers, investors and the business community come together to interact, learn and share. "Over the next month, we will open the doors on new Microsoft Reactor spaces in London, Sydney, Tel Aviv, Berlin, Shanghai and Beijing. These spaces join our existing locations in Redmond, Seattle, San Francisco and New York," the company said.
On the other hand, Microsoft ScaleUp, a global programme, will offer late-stage and Series A startups growth strategies such as co-marketing and co-selling opportunities and help the startups hone their infrastructure. Microsoft Ventures will also look to invest in promising startups between Series A and D rounds.
Besides, the programme will provide startups with up to $120,000 in free Azure credits, enterprise grade technical support and development tools – supporting the languages of their choice, such as Node.js, Java and .NET. In addition, qualified startups will get access to productivity and business applications, including Office 365 and Microsoft Dynamics 365.