ASU Accelerator Programs Named Microsoft BizSpark Network Partners

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ASU Venture Catalyst and Edson Accelerator to offer Microsoft services to clients

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Because Edson is a BizSpark partner, we are saving over $100,000, funds that can now be used in other critical areas of growing our business

ASU’s Venture Catalyst and Edson Student Entrepreneur Accelerator have been selected as partners in Microsoft’s BizSpark Network program. BizSpark is a global program designed to help accelerate the success of early stage startups through offering reduced costs for software, support and solutions. This partnership will allow ASU to nominate the startups enrolled in their accelerators to receive Microsoft products and services, including Cloud Computing solution, Windows Azure and Windows Phone Platform.

“Our focus in the Venture Catalyst and Edson Accelerator programs is equipping startups with the resources they need to be successful," says Gordon McConnell, Executive Director of ASU Venture Catalyst. “Partnering with Microsoft to be able to offer our startups software, cloud computing, and other technical solutions that would otherwise be too costly for their early stage companies will be one more way that we can help facilitate their success. We are thrilled to have been selected to be a BizSpark partner”.

ASU was nominated to be a BizSpark partner by Steve Seow, Architect Evangelist for Microsoft. BizSpark Network Partners must meet several criteria including share Microsoft’s passion for driving the success of startups through mentoring, networking, business consulting, financial assistance, and peer connections.
“When nominating organizations to be Network Partners, we need to know that they understand the startup environment and what it takes to succeed,” says Seow. “ASU has proven that they do. We gladly welcome them to our network.”

Unique to the BizSpark partner network is Microsoft’s Windows Azure offer. This additional offer, given to selected members of the partner network, gives qualifying startups free access to the cloud computing solution for one full year and a 50% reduction on the service cost for the second year. One ASU student-run company in the Edson Accelerator is already taking full advantage of this incredible service. Peter Wegner, Founder and CEO of Mercury Innovative, was nominated by McConnell’s team to be the first beneficiary of this partnership.

“Mercury Innovative accepted the full offer from BizSpark” says Wegner, “so we will be receiving one free year of Windows Azure and one year at 50% off. We also have free access to a Solutions Architect. Because Edson is a BizSpark partner, we are saving over $100,000, funds that can now be used in other critical areas of growing our business.”                

About ASU Venture Catalyst ( ):
ASU Venture Catalyst equips high potential startups for success. The Catalyst assists university students, faculty and staff, as well as local and global companies, with launching startups or accelerating existing ventures. Based at ASU SkySong, The Catalyst offers investor connections, technology road maps, go-to-market strategy consulting, mentoring opportunities, and several other programs and services, all designed to identify and develop investment-grade companies.

About Edson Student Entrepreneur Accelerator ( ):
The Edson Accelerator provides funding, office space, and guidance to teams of students within all university disciplines. This accelerator gives student entrepreneurs the opportunity to develop their innovative ideas and launch viable businesses. As an integral program of ASU Venture Catalyst, students in the Edson accelerator have access to seasoned entrepreneurs, industry mentors, and other Catalyst programs that enable them to advance enterprise.

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Meagan Garrett
ASU SkySong
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