Back in October 2021, Microsoft announced Startups Founders Hub, which is a platform to empower new entrepreneurs who are looking to tangibly implement and execute their ideas. At that time, the program was available as a limited preview where applications were being reviewed and accepted on a rolling basis. However, Microsoft has now announced that the platform is open for all.
The overall aim of Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub is to assist budding entrepreneurs by providing them access to personalized coaching as well as Microsoft 365 services like Teams for collaboration. This will enable them to build their ideas on top of Microsoft technologies while receiving guidance on how to secure funding for it and sell it as well.
To meet these ends, Microsoft will be focusing on three areas. The first is about unlocking innovation for everyone. What this means is that the company doesn't care if your idea is investor-backed or not, you will still get access to all of the program's benefits.
The second key area is offering scalable technology benefits with up to $150,000 in Azure credits. This will be offered in four stages namely, $1,000 for ideation, $5,000 during development, $25,000 for growth, and $120,000 for scalability. That's not all; Microsoft will further sweeten the pot by offering free access to $100 worth of software, including Microsoft 365, GitHub, Teams, and more. An added benefit with this general availability of the program is that Microsoft has partnered with OpenAI to offer entrepreneurs access to consultation services and the company's API which will enable you to use GPT-3.
Finally, Microsoft will also be focusing on provisioning skilling resources and expert guidance. This includes technical assistance around the clock, 1:1 technical advisory sessions, networking, and training events.