Microsoft AI Innovate: Tech-giant launches new programme to empower AI startups in India
October 24, 2021

Tech giant Microsoft on October 20, 2021, launched a new initiative Microsoft AI Innovate for nurturing and scaling startups that have been leveraging Artificial Intelligence (AI) in India.

The 10-week programme by Microsoft will support the startups in India leveraging Artificial Intelligence technologies, helping them scale the operations, build industry expertise and drive innovation in the country.

Microsoft India President Anant Maheshwari said in a virtual event, “AI is increasingly transitioning from artificial intelligence into the augmented intelligence that ensures faster, efficient, and more targeted experience for everyone.”

He went on to say that Artificial Intelligence has a tremendous potential to empower people and institutions to do better, understand the customers more deeply, enable scientific breakthroughs and share information more quickly.


Microsoft, through its latest initiative, will focus on providing tech and business opportunities to startups for improving their solutions, transforming organisations, and building responsibility to make Artificial Intelligence accessible to everyone.

The initiative by Microsoft will also enable the startups in India to reach out to newer customers and the geographies with the sales and partner networks of Microsoft.

The Programme will bring leading-edge tech know-how, global GTM (go to market) partnerships as well as engineering and research experts from Microsoft.


Startups with enterprise-ready solutions will be provided opportunities to build their solutions alongside a dedicated team of professionals.

The Indian startups will also have go-to-market support as well as the co-selling benefits with the sales team of Microsoft and partner ecosystem.

The startups will be able to strengthen their networking reach by getting access to top partner and customer events.

Microsoft AI Innovate: Key details

Both B2B (Business to Business) and B2C (Business to Customers) startups from various industries, including healthcare, financial services, agriculture, education, manufacturing and logistics, space, e-commerce, retail can participate in the quarterly cohorts of the programme.

The launch cohort, supported by TiE Mumbai, will start in November 2021. The first cohort will be focusing on manufacturing and logistics and the second one will focus on fintech.

The selected startups in each of the cohorts will have access to the industry deep-dive sessions. They will also be facilitated with AI masterclass by industry experts, skilling and certification opportunities, mentoring by unicorn founders, among other benefits.

Qualified seed to series B startups will be provided with the technical enablement benefits. They will also receive support with business and sale acceleration needs such as marketplace onboarding.

Why Microsoft AI Innovate will be significant for India?

India has the third-largest Artificial Intelligence (AI) startup ecosystem in the world. The adoption of Artificial Intelligence can add more than 90 billion to the Indian economy by 2035. In order to maximise AI’s potential and mitigate its risks, India needs to develop the system in a way that is responsible and fosters trust.

As per the Microsoft India President, as the creators, users and advocates of technology, it is significant to make careful choices so that the technology ultimately translates into benefits and opportunities for all.