Microsoft partnering with MaRS to promote entrepreneurship in Canada

Startup hubs in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver working with Microsoft Ventures to support local startups

Toronto, Oct. 31, 2013 – Microsoft Canada today announced formal relationships with three of the country’s leading startup hubs: Toronto’s MaRS Discovery District, Montreal’s Notman House and Launch Academy in Vancouver.

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 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.

“Having members of the Microsoft Ventures team onsite at MaRS offers tremendous value to the diverse and talented entrepreneurs who gather here from across many fields and focus on many different technologies and markets,” said Salim Teja, Managing Director of MaRS’ Information Technology, Communications & Entertainment (ICE) practice. “We’re thrilled to have them here as a resource for our startups.”

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 are also available to technology-based startups through Microsoft BizSpark.

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’ 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 it an ideal partner for this initiative.

For more information about Microsoft Ventures, visit .

For more information about Microsoft BizSpark, visit . 

MaRS Discovery District (@MaRSDD) is a mission-driven innovation centre located in Toronto. MaRS works with partners to catalyze, accelerate and amplify innovation. MaRS supports entrepreneurs building Canada’s next generation of growth companies. In the last three years, MaRS startup clients have raised over $750 million in capital, earned over $375 million in revenue and hired well over 3,500 workers into knowledge economy jobs.

For more information, contact:

Melissa Hughes
Manager, Media & Community Relations
MaRS Discovery District
416.673.8100 ext. 2710