What you need to know
- Microsoft just announced its Startups Founders Hub, which aims to lower the barriers to creating a business.
- The platform can provide over $100,000 worth of tools, including GitHub and Microsoft 365.
- Microsoft also announced a partnership with OpenAI that will give startup founders three free months of an OpenAI API Innovation License.
Microsoft just announced a new platform to help startup founders. The Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub will provide resources and tools for startups, even if those organizations do not have third-party backing. Over $100,000 worth of tools will be available to startups through the program, including access to GitHub and Microsoft 365.
Microsoft notes that over 90% of startups go out of business within their first year, according to industry estimates. The Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub aims to lower some of the barriers that startups face and to help organizations avoid common pitfalls.
"Navigating the headwinds of building a startup can be challenging – from focusing on innovation and connecting with investors to finding product market fit," said Microsoft's executive vice president of Cloud and AI, Scott Guthrie. "Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub meets founders where they are, offering best-in-class developer tools and a breadth of cloud offerings across every function, so startups can reduce costs and accelerate development with a partner they can trust."
The program focuses on three areas: lowering barriers for startups, providing access to GitHub, the Microsoft Cloud, and other technologies, and providing mentorship for founders.
Startups don't have to be investor-backed to be part of the Microsoft for Startups Founders Hub. This should open the doors for more organizations. "Our ambition is to make the global startup ecosystem more representative of the world at large regardless of background, location, progress or passion," said Jeff Ma, vice president, Microsoft for Startups.
Up to $150,000 worth of Azure access will be available to businesses that are part of the platform. Founders could receive additional credits depending on the stage of development their startup is at.
Microsoft also announced a partnership with OpenAI, which will provide startup founders with access to $1,000 of credits. Those credits come in the form of a three-month OpenAI API Innovation license.
Microsoft has worked with OpenAI for years, including a $1 billion investment in 2019. As part of that partnership, OpenAI moved to Microsoft Azure as its exclusive cloud provider.
The new hub from Microsoft will also connect founders with experts within their respective industries. Startups will be able to receive technical support as well as training for how to lead an organization. Microsoft will also help founders network with mentors.
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Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at email@example.com.