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TheStreet Open House

Leading Startup Hubs Work With Microsoft To Promote Entrepreneurship In Canada

Startup hubs in Montreal, Toronto & Vancouver partner with Microsoft Ventures to bring support to local startups

TORONTO, Oct. 31, 2013 /CNW/ - Working to help foster Canadian innovation and entrepreneurship, Microsoft Canada announced today formal relationships with three of the country's leading startup hubs: Launch Academy in Vancouver, Montreal's Notman House and MaRS Discovery District in Toronto.

The relationship is part of Microsoft Ventures, a global initiative to help entrepreneurs build great companies. Working with startups at every stage of maturity, the initiative provides the tools, resources, and expertise startups need to help succeed.

"We are excited to partner with these three leading startup hubs because entrepreneurism is a local phenomenon and Launch Academy, Notman House and MaRS Discovery District with their proven record for success, represent amazing examples of startup innovation, support and community," said Cliff Reeves, senior director of community programs, Microsoft Ventures. "Great ideas and smart businesses are created in local entrepreneurial communities and we are looking forward to collaborating with Launch Academy, Notman House and MaRS Discovery District, some of Canada's leading startup hubs."

Microsoft Ventures works actively in the community to empower and enable entrepreneurs to thrive by offering resources to help launch successful businesses and, by extension, to help grow the Canadian economy overall.  Microsoft is on site at all three locations to provide technical mentorship and assistance as well as access to devices for development and testing. The Microsoft BizSpark program further supports tech startups by providing them with free software including Windows, Visual Studio, Office and more representing over $13,000 in software.  Windows Azure cloud hosting credits worth $150 a month is also available to technology based startups through Microsoft BizSpark.

For more information about Microsoft Ventures, visit www.microsoftventures.com

For more information about Microsoft BizSpark, visit www.microsoft.com/bizspark

Learn More about Each Startup Hub

MaRS Discovery District (@marsdd): Toronto's MaRS Discovery District is one of the world's largest urban innovation centres, cultivating high-impact ventures and equipping innovators to drive economic and social prosperity in Canada. MaRS' Information Technology, Communications & Entertainment (ICE) practice supports key industry clusters by providing them with business/technical advisory services, education and market research, and connecting them to talent, customers and capital. MaRS' global reputation for innovation and dedication to building high-growth companies makes them an ideal partner.

Notman House (@notman): Montreal represents a growing share of the Canadian tech startup ecosystem, with many startups emerging and an extremely active venture capital scene, and Notman House brings together players from all parts of the community. Notman House has rapidly become the "Home of the Web" in Montreal, making it a natural fit to partner with Microsoft. Many great founders, startups, and ideas have been born from the meeting space, where events and meetups occur almost daily, and the office space provides a place for collaboration and growth for many startups, both from Montreal and abroad.

Launch Academy (@launch_academy): Vancouver is known as a creative and entrepreneurial city and Launch Academy embodies this through their pre-accelerator program and co-working space. Launch Academy aims to build a vibrant startup ecosystem and a prosperous economy where new jobs are created and new markets are discovered, which is why Microsoft is excited to partner with them.

Visit Microsoft Ventures at  www.microsoftventures.com to learn more about how Microsoft is helping the next generation of smart companies take flight.

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