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RIYADH: With Saudi Arabia’s Vision 2030 plan stirring the entrepreneurial landscape, startups in the Kingdom are all set to take their businesses to the next level.
One example is the expansion of the Kingdom’s reach in Microsoft for Startups, a global incentive program from Microsoft Corp. dedicated to helping startups scale their growth.
“Ten percent of our startups in the region are currently in Saudi Arabia, and the numbers will increase further as the Kingdom’s ecosystem really heats up,” Roberto Croci, Microsoft’s general manager for startups, Middle East and Africa. , said Arab News.
Ten percent of our startups in the region are currently in Saudi Arabia, and the numbers will increase further as the ecosystem in the Kingdom really heats up.
The program supports entrepreneurs with the technology, tools, and resources needed to build and run their business, in addition to leveraging its network of businesses and businesses to provide startups with market intelligence and mentorship. It basically bridges the gap between startups and large corporations.
“If we can make these resources accessible to startups, I think we’re unlocking huge potential,” Croci said.
He added: “This is where we want to differentiate ourselves. At the top of the technology pillar, we want to help startups build great products that can scale and integrate with third-party apps. »
The talent hunt
The company has diligently driven accelerator programs such as Founders Hub and GrowthX, focusing on improving business performance rather than funding.
“The two main pillars of our programs are centered around access to technology and markets,” Croci said while adding that the platform will launch a new acceleration program to focus on sustainable startups in the Middle East and in North Africa.
The platform plans to broaden its horizon by focusing not only on the funding aspect of a startup but also on the impact it leaves on society at large.
“We always read about funding rounds in the news, but what about the outcome of the funding? Are these startups growing? We should be talking about successful startups, not the ones that raise huge sums, but the ones that leave a lasting impact on society,” Croci said.
The company focuses on startups in stages between pre-seed and Series B, especially pre-Series A and Series A.
Microsoft does not invest in startups directly, but when the company finds growth potential, it recommends them to M12, a venture capital fund under its wing.
The company also organizes a “demonstration day” for young companies, an event that puts them directly in contact with investors.
With these encouragements, fintech and healthcare companies have emerged atop Microsoft’s startup mountain and are well positioned to unleash a wave of growth in the economy.
As they say in angel funding circles, there’s no greater joy than catching them young and watching them grow.