Awhile back Microsoft had the BizSpark program that offered free Microsoft software for startups. A couple of my own startups were able to get free licenses for Microsoft software and Azure services credits to help get bootstrapped. While BizSpark is no longer around, Microsoft has a newer program called Microsoft for Startups that offers similar benefits, plus more than BizSpark ever offered!

Microsoft for Startups Benefits

The Microsoft for Startups program has a large number of benefits that are offered for any startup that participates. Plus, there are additional benefits for startups that meet certain qualifying criteria.

Here’s a list of some of the most notable benefits offered by the Microsoft for Startups program; for qualifying startups:

  • up to $120k of free Azure cloud for two years
  • Visual Studio Enterprise cloud subscription
  • Office 365 Business Premium
  • Dynamics 365 for Customer Engagement and Talent
  • Enterprise grage Azure support
  • NDA roadmap briefings with engineers
  • 1:1 consultations
  • Architectural Design Sessions
  • 1:few coding events
  • Business enablement
    • Customized 6-month Go-To-Market plan
    • Dedicated marketplace onboarding support desk
    • Marketplace listing optimization
  • Sales enablement
    • A dedicated success manager
    • Bi-directional lead sharing with our sales teams
    • Targeted account planning
  • And much more!

This is not an official list, and these benefits may change with or without notice. Please reference the official Microsoft for Startups site for the current benefits offered to startups.

Microsoft for Startups Eligibility Requirements

Microsoft does have some requirements that need to be met for a “startup” to qualify for the program. Just as the old BizSpark program was targeted towards startups building products, and not consultancies, the Microsoft for Startups has the same requirement.

Here are the other qualification requirements for getting your Startup accepted in the Microsoft for Startups program:

  • Offer an innovative, technical solution that supports customers in their digital transformation
  • Less than five years of existence
  • Less than $10M in total annual revenue
  • Seed or Series A, or equivalent phase of development
  • Up to $20M in funding

If you’re interested in getting your startup signed up and enrolled in the Microsoft for Startups program, then you’ll certainly want to go to the official website and apply today!

Microsoft MVP

Chris Pietschmann is a Microsoft MVP, HashiCorp Ambassador, and Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT) with 20+ years of experience designing and building Cloud & Enterprise systems. He has worked with companies of all sizes from startups to large enterprises. He has a passion for technology and sharing what he learns with others to help enable them to learn faster and be more productive.
HashiCorp Ambassador Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT) Microsoft Certified: Azure Solutions Architect