Microsoft chooses Australia for world-class tech startup program

05 Mar 2018

Microsoft has chosen Australia as the newest location of its global ScaleUp program – an intensive four-month accelerator program for tech startups.

The Microsoft ScaleUp program will be located in the new Sydney Startup Hub, one of only eight locations in the world to host the accelerator.

‘This is a resounding acknowledgement of both the quality and potential of Australian tech startups and entrepreneurs,’ says Steven Worrall, Managing Director, Microsoft Australia.

‘It is also recognition of the important role governments across Australia continue to play in fostering a strong startup ecosystem and providing the infrastructure, such as the Sydney Startup Hub, to support and grow the next generation of Australian tech businesses.’

Kevin Cryan, Senior Investment Specialist in Services and Technology at Austrade, says Australia’s startup ecosystem is robust and growing. ‘By choosing Australia as the location of its newest ScaleUp program, Microsoft is joining the intense competition to secure high-quality companies and workers within the Australian tech sector,’ he says.

‘We have a strong, services-based economy that is ripe for disruptive technologies such as blockchain, biometrics and immersive simulation. These startups are well positioned to assist global corporations seeking to buy, partner or invest in new technologies to improve efficiencies and productivity along their value chain.’

Opened in February 2018, the Sydney Startup Hub has space for 2,500 residents. It is an initiative led by Jobs for NSW.

Launched in 2012, the Microsoft ScaleUp program has seen approximately 650 startups raise a total of about US$3 billion in funding after graduating from programs run in Bangalore, Beijing, Berlin, London, Seattle, Shanghai and Tel Aviv. Microsoft does not take any equity in the startups while they participate in the program. 

In another sign of its desire to get closer to startups, in February 2018 Microsoft launched the Microsoft for Startups program. A US$500 million commitment over two years, the program provides dedicated resources to prepare startup marketing and sales teams to effectively sell their cloud solutions to enterprise organisations in partnership with Microsoft’s global sales organisation and partner ecosystem.

Startups interested in attending the ScaleUp accelerator or in joining Microsoft for StartUps can contact Microsoft for more information.