Microsoft launches SA innovation centre to help startups

Following the opening of a startup innovation centre in Queensland in 2012, Microsoft has opened its second one in Adelaide.

Microsoft is expected to help drive growth for small to medium-sized enterprises with the launch of the Microsoft Innovation Centre South Australia (MICSA) in Adelaide.

The MICSA is expected engage with more than 40 startups, provide technical training and resources to at least 250 people, and create at least 80 jobs in South Australia over the next 18 months. The hub is also expected to connect startups with Microsoft's customer and partner network to help them kick start their product launches.

Microsoft Australia state director Brian Kealey told ZDNet that the innovation centre will help bridge the gap between startups in South Australia and the resources they need to turn their ideas into products.

"I think what differentiates South Australia is there is a good talent pool that are looking for opportunities to grow their business and grow their impact," he said.

"There's definitely a joined-up set of activities by industry, government, and academia, with really strong focus on entrepreneurship as a vocation and startups as an economic engine."

The MICSA has already attracted five initial startup members: myEvidence, Makers Empire, Lend A Skilled Hand, Codies, and Jemsoft.

Each are focused on a range of technology from the Internet of Things, 3D printing, access control, and remote service economy solutions, Kealey said.

The MICSA is Microsoft's second Australian innovation centre, having opened one in Queensland in 2012. It joins a network of over 100 Microsoft Innovation Centres in 42 countries worldwide.

The New South Wales government, together with some of Australia's largest banking, property, and technology firms, announced on Wednesday that it plans to establish a similar hub in Sydney known as Stone and Chalk to support startups looking to disrupt the Asia-Pacific services industry.

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