Microsoft announced a major milestone for its Microsoft for Startups initiative, first launched in 2018. The company says that participants are now on pace to “close more than $1 billion in new sales opportunities over the next year.” In addition, Microsoft is adding two new benefits for participants.
Participating startups now have access to GitHub Enterprise, in addition to all of the other benefits that come with joining the program. Microsoft Power Platform, which “analyze data, build solutions, automate processes and create virtual agents,” is also set to be added to the program. GitHub Enterprise is available starting today, while Microsoft Power Platform will arrive “in the coming months,” Microsoft says.
Going forward, Microsoft says it is focused on three key areas:
- Listening to the needs of startup communities around the world and employing these insights to guide our program experience from events and education, to unique vertical tracks such as our Quantum or Autonomous Driving
- Extending our reach even deeper into communities of under-estimated founders and ensuring diverse voices are heard and championed.
- Providing open access to distribution channels including our commercial marketplaces (Azure Marketplace and AppSource), cloud solution providers (CSP), and our enterprise sales force, all positioned to empower startups with unparalleled growth opportunities.
Microsoft for Startups began in 2018 with a $500 million commitment from Microsoft. The program aims to offer startups co-selling resources, technical support and development tools, along with free Azure credits.
In November, Microsoft announced that it teamed up with NVIDIA to give startups another boost. The two companies specifically targeted “cutting-edge” AI startups with a mix of benefits from Microsoft for Startups, along with “preferred access” to discounted technology, free credits for NVIDIA Deep Learning Institute’s online courses, discounts on NVIDIA systems, and more.
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