Recently online retailer ASOS has announced they are going into collaboration with Microsoft to identify Retail start-up technology companies. This public statement was made during Microsoft’s investor day in London called ‘The Pitch’ in the presence of its most recent start-up companies and a room full of investors.
As ASOS joins Microsoft Ventures start-up program it will be included in the application evaluation panel for Microsoft Ventures, and take active part in identifying potential retail start-up tech companies to join the accelerator from September. ASOS will also contribute as an important participant in the next accelerator program and provide necessary guidance to start-up companies with a definite inclination towards retail.
Anand Krishnan, general manager, developer and platform group at Microsoft, commented that the wide retail space in London is big and ripe enough for disruption. He also said it is difficult to make an outline, how a consumer take the buying experience and revitalize it with technology.
He speculated this collaboration with ASOS will positively influence the start-up program and allow it to go at a higher level which may include fashion retail space also.
Microsoft has also declared it will have a presence in Level 39 in Canary Wharf. It has a special implication as this is Europe’s largest incubator space for financial services, retail and future cities start-ups.
This partnership has an added interesting feature; it will allow start-ups located at Level 39 to have direct onsite access to Microsoft experts. This will be extremely beneficial for them as they will be able to get various advices in multiple areas including technology, enterprise sales and finance and product development.
It is also decided that Microsoft will deliver workshops on cloud, and a partnership between Level 39 and BizSpark Plus Network will jointly make it possible to offer start-ups access to £60,000 worth of credits on the Microsoft Azure cloud platform.
Head of Level 39, Eric Van der Kleij, recognized this event of welcoming Microsoft to Level 39 as a vital step towards their target to attract some of the eminent technology players to become integrated into the very fabric of the Canary Wharf technology cluster and growth opportunities.
He also highlighted the importance of start-ups having access to cloud services by jokingly mentioning that he himself sold his start-up company Adeptra for £150m only. If he could avail the benefit of cloud services at that time, it could have been an incredibly important thing.
The second Microsoft Ventures Accelerator will begin in September for which still there is opening for Applications.