Invest Ottawa partnership brings Microsoft for Startups program to the capital

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Executives and members of Ottawa's startup community gather to unveil a new mural at Bayview Yards following the launch of the Invest Ottawa-Microsoft partnership on Tues., Feb. 4. Photo provided

The capital’s brightest startups now have access to the services and sales arm of one of the world’s biggest tech companies, thanks to a new partnership between Microsoft and Invest Ottawa.

The two organizations announced the Ottawa launch of the Microsoft for Startups program earlier this week.

Microsoft for Startups gives fledgling software firms a leg up; this could be in the form of go-to-market strategies, engineering support or product launch campaigns boosted by the company’s social following. Eligible startups also receive free access to Microsoft’s cloud services as well as to the Washington-based tech giant’s sales channels and partner network.

Locally, the initiative will see Microsoft work with Invest Ottawa on programming at Bayview Yards and support for startup and scaleup companies running through the local economic development agency’s own programs.

Microsoft has previously partnered with organizations such as Techstars and MaRS Discovery District in Toronto to connect the company with promising startups across the globe.

Invest Ottawa CEO Michael Tremblay, who joined the organization from Microsoft Canada three years ago, said in a statement that the partnership will give local startups “access to new global markets, customers and investors.”

A release said the Ottawa tech sector’s capacity for “public sector innovation” motivated Microsoft’s decision to bring its startup program to the National Capital Region.