L-Spark hits world stage with Microsoft partnership

Microsoft announced Tuesday it has selected Ottawa’s L-Spark to be one of 150 global incubators and accelerators for its BizSpark Plus program.

“We are thrilled to be part of this exclusive group,” L-Spark managing director Leo Lax said in a statement. “This will extend our champion partnerships to provide more resources for our companies and help further facilitate their successful journey on the road to series A financing.”

The BizSpark Plus program will be offered through L-Spark and the other partners, helping startups by providing access to Microsoft’s cloud services, software and support.

Intended more for the accelerator crowd, mature startups will use cloud services, providing them the ability to scale and get access to $120,000 worth of credits with Azure, Microsoft’s cloud platform. Services available to the startups include machine learning, media services and hub notification, all of which can lower operating costs and connect them with more customers.

In an interview with OBJ earlier this year, Mr. Lax said the program’s brand was still “relatively unknown,” but it seems that is not the case anymore.

“Absolutely, we can change this tagline now and are excited to do so!” Mr. Lax said. “Moving forward, we would like to position L-SPARK as the only Canadian enterprise SaaS-focused incubator and accelerator.”

Microsoft Canada’s vice-president of developer experience, Mary-Ellen Anderson, said the company was “incredibly excited” to welcome L-Spark on board the program.

“Microsoft is committed to supporting cloud innovation in Canada and we’re thrilled to bring this offer to our startup community. We celebrate local entrepreneurship and want to help accelerate Canadian startups on their path to success,” Ms. Anderson said in a statement