The Hassenfeld Family Innovation Center (HFIC) recently became a Network Partner with Microsoft’s BizSpark Program. According to a press release from Hassenfeld, BizSpark “is a global program designed to accelerate the success of early-stage startups.”
The press release stated that BizSpark creates a mutually beneficial relationship between startups, the Microsoft Corporation and themselves by connecting startups with resources, mentorships and guidance.
The Hassenfeld Center aims to “support the deeply diverse entrepreneurial spirit at Brandeis,” said Rebecca Menapace, associate provost for innovation and executive director of the center as well as the Brandeis Office of Technology Licensing, in the press release. They are excited about BizSpark because they feel it helps the Center continue to reach this goal.
BizSpark will help anyone who is eligible in the community, whether it be students, faculty or staff. To be eligible for the program, startups must “be actively engaged in development of a software-based product or service that is a core piece of their business model, have been in business less than three years at the time of enrollment and have less than US$1M in annual revenue,” the press release said.
BizSpark will help eligible startups by providing them with leading technology services, business support and opportunities for marketing during the first three years of their business, all at no upfront costs. Specifically, “They provide development tools, platform technologies, production licenses … They have access to Microsoft Developer Network set of online services—websites, newsletters, developer conferences, trade media, blogs and software distribution,” said Christina Moores, Innovation Communications Specialist at the Brandeis International Business School and the Hassenfeld Family Innovation Center.
“Microsoft and the university’s innovation center are committed to helping entrepreneurs transform their ambitions into sustainable, dynamic businesses and to foster innovation and entrepreneurialism across the Brandeis community,” the press release stated.