Microsoft keen to work with Indian startups to solve last-mile issues: Nadella

Satya Nadella announces in Hyderabad that Microsoft is looking to partner with Telangana and Andhra Pradesh states in various areas.

Lauding the Telangana government's efforts to promote entrepreneurship ecosystem by launching startup incubator T-Hub, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella on Monday said that the global IT behemoth would work with the government in supporting startups.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella at T-Hub in Hyderabad
(Image: Supplied)

Nadella, who is on a four-day private visit to Hyderabad, the joint capital of the states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, went around T-Hub along with Telangana Minister for Information Technology K T Rama Rao and other senior officials, and was briefed by them about the various activities undertaken by the facility to encourage startups.

Satya also promised to look into the request made by the Telangana government to launch white space technology, making use of unused TV spectrum, on an experimental basis in one of the districts in the state as his company was interested to provide internet for all with the help of this technology in India.

"It rained high profile visitors at T-Hub today. Thanks to Satya Nadella, Keerti Melkote (co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Aruba Networks) and Vishal Sikka (Infosys CEO)," Rama Rao tweeted later.

Earlier in the day, Nadella called on Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu and after a 90-minute meeting, representatives of Microsoft and the Andhra Pradesh government signed MoUs to partner in fields of education, citizen services and agriculture in Andhra Pradesh.

Nadella, who was briefed about various IT initiatives such as fibregrid and e-Pragathi (e-Progress), agreed to consider Naidu's request to open a Microsoft campus in Andhra Pradesh. Both sides agreed to set up a team of officials to work on the MoUs and finalise a road map within a month to implement them.

Addressing the entrepreneurs at T-Hub, Nadella said that Microsoft was keen to develop the startup ecosystem in the country and wanted interested companies to work with Microsoft in utilising white space technology and ensure last mile connectivity in villages by providing bandwidth to them at low cost.

"Whatever technology the companies want to use, Microsoft will support them so that villages are developed," he said.

"Your success stories are an inspiration to the world and Microsoft wants to partner with you. Do not dilute the ideas you have and work hard to make them a reality. The three points to success are concept, capability and culture," he said.

Citing his personal experience, Nadella advised not to get disheartened by failures.

"Learn lessons from your failures and you will definitely succeed. Indian startup ecosystem will dominate the world's IT sector in the future," Nadella said while replying to a question from one of the participants.

India has emerged as the world's third largest startup ecosystem, after the US and the UK -- with 4,200 new companies registered in 2015.

The Telangana government is keen to develop the small and mid-sized enterprises using cloud technology and also digitise classrooms to improve literacy in schools.