Software giant Microsoft has decided to go for a change in its course when it comes to the Indian Startup Ecosystem. After observing the ecosystem up and close, the tech biggie has decided to focus all its attention on promising later-stage startups in the country through its Bengaluru-based accelerator program.
Initially launched with a motive of providing a helping hand to early-stage firms, Microsoft has now decided to advance to only later-stage startups in its fifth year of operation in the Indian subcontinent. The accelerator helps selected startups by making things easier, approachable and achievable for them. The accelerator mainly helps Indian startups scale up and go global if this is what they want.
Since the big shift in its strategy, the Microsoft Accelerator program has had enterprise companies like customer experience management Customer XP, video assessment platform Talview, CRM platform Cloud Cherry and several others use their partner and customer network to climb the success ladder and take their operations to next level.
The software giant recently revealed the name of the 14 startups it had selected based on its new strategy for the 11th cohort of its Microsoft Accelerator program. All the 14 selected startups are currently in their late stage, have an average age of 3.5 years and a team size of no more than 80 employees. Together the 14 startups have raised close to $64 million in funding till date.
The 14 selected startups of Microsoft Accelerator’s 11th cohort will be getting easy access to Microsoft’s tech stack and Azure technologies and make use of the software giant’s advanced cloud services in areas such as – Big Data, Cognitive Services, Advanced Analytics and IoT to scale their products and serve enterprise clients.
According to a statement given by Bala Girisaballa, CEO-in-Residence, Microsoft Accelerator, India to The Hindu, the company decided to go for a change in direction in its strategy for the Indian Startup Ecosystem as it felt it could bring more of a difference in the trajectory of later-stage startups in the country than others. He said, “We realised that our strength was there. We needed to change the strategy.”
He further added, “We have the ability to open them up to Fortune 1000 companies. But when you put them in front of a customer (like a large bank), they can’t be early stage. Slowly, we started moving to late-stage companies.”