Microsoft is planning to put a Microsoft Innovation Center (MIC) in downtown Atlanta’s iconic Flatiron building. After Miami, this Atlanta MIC would mark only the second MIC in the US; there are over 100 MICs worldwide. MICs facilitate top-notch support and resources for entrepreneurs, startups, and students to inspire new companies and jobs to the local technology business environment.
Microsoft plans to work closely with Atlanta’s Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative (WEI), which is also housed in the Flatiron building. Atlanta’s WEI selects 15 women entrepreneurs through a competitive selection process to develop their business ideas in a startup environment where they can get guidance from Atlanta’s leading female executives. Microsoft will provide all of Flatiron’s tenants with a BizSpark subscription; free access to software and development platforms, like Microsoft Azure. Microsoft will also host events and speaker series, as well as offering mentoring, coaching, and grants to Flatiron tenants.
A Microsoft Business Evangelist, Bradley Jensen, explained the purpose of Atlanta’s new MIC:
It’s (Microsoft Innovation Center) a place where you bring government, startups, academics and community together. It helps foster the growth within the city (Atlanta) of an IT skill set, or pool of IT folks. It helps bridge the skills gap.
While the Microsoft Innovation Center (MIC) will be a hotbed for growth for Atlanta’s technology sector, for Microsoft, the innovation centers are also about market share growth. With all the resources that Microsoft will provide to Flatiron’s entrepreneurs and companies, Microsoft hopes to gain new customers to build products and services on Microsoft software and development platforms. Hopefully, Atlanta will get some much needed technology growth within the city and Microsoft will help cultivate that growth.
For more information on Microsoft Innovation Centers and Atlanta’s Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative (WEI), check out the links below. Let us know what you think about this new Microsoft Innovation Center in the comments section below.