Microsoft BizSpark Programme Project
Partner name: Microsoft South Africa
Project name: Microsoft BizSpark Programme
Funding round: CFP 2
Funding: Jobs Fund grant R96 000 000
Matched Funding R136 759 861
Window: Enterprise development
Location: National
Partners: Microsoft partners and clients
Problem statement:
Although the South African economy consumes about R23 billion a year on software products and related services, the country has very limited high-level IT skills. The high cost of attaining such skills and establishing software-related business are the largest barriers for entry by new and small businesses in this sector. As a result, the South African ICT sector is dominated by big businesses.
The BizSpark Programme is an initiative by Microsoft South Africa, working with its partners and clients, to support emerging ICT SMMEs.
Microsoft’s BizSpark project addresses the IT industry gap by equipping 600 entrepreneurs who are trained in high-level ICT skills with relevant software and hardware to service Microsoft clients across all sectors of the economy. The entrepreneurs’ businesses will appeal to the market because they use Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing platform, which allows users to only buy licences for system components that they use, rather than buying traditional shell systems and paying costly shell licences on system components they do not use. The project targets largely young entrepreneurs, with a particular focus on women-owned start-ups.
Expected results:
New permanent jobs 600
Training completed 600