All around the USA, startups, inventors, and entrepreneurs need access to capital, but just as often and perhaps more so, they need access to cloud technology. I know this to be true because I’ve been on the road for almost eight months touring incubators, accelerators, and little communities via makerspaces and hackerspaces where I witness what these bright and energetic minds are creating.
While my roadtrip has been focused on 3D tech (you can read more at 3DRV.com), as a long time technology researcher and writer I cannot help but notice the other innovations all around me as I am shown around a facility or startup space. Some of these spaces are sponsored by large technology companies, but most are not, which is what makes today’s announcement from IBM so compelling.
IBM is launching the “IBM Global Entrepreneur Program for Cloud Startups,” which will help startups and entrepreneurs harness the power of IBM Cloud, as well as deeply connect and embed them into IBM’s vast global network of enterprise clients, consultants, Innovation Centers and more to rapidly build innovations, scale quickly and accelerate growth.
In layman’s terms: If you’re starting a company, you want access to cloud infrastructure and services (built around open APIs) that will help you get moving and scale up, as needed. The infrastructure comes via SoftLayer (an IBM co) and Bluemix, which is for app development (more than 75 runtimes and services). Some Bluemix examples:
- Integration with Twitter to capture global social data insights with analytics;
- Aspera’s high-speed data transfer tools;
- App health and performance monitoring services; and,
- Cloudant’s flexible, high-performing Database-as-a-Service.
Through the global program, qualifying startups will receive up to $120,000 worth of credits to put towards IBM Cloud usage, giving them the instant infrastructure needed to quickly launch their businesses and focus resources on coding, building, scaling and bringing innovations to market. The program will also offer startups invaluable and in-depth connections into IBM’s enterprise client base, many of whom consistently look to the startup community for new approaches to industry challenges.
According to more than 300 global venture capitalists, private equity and growth equity investors this year, they’ve largely been investing in tech companies, especially cloud and mobile (source: 2014 Global Venture Capital Confidence Survey). As these areas continue to heat up, IBM is committing to providing startups with the tools they need to build and capitalize on the next generation of apps for the cloud.
One of the things I really liked learning about in this new offering is that they are providing tech support and consulting through IBM’s physical and global network of 43 Innovation Centers, a new incubator space in NYC’s Silicon Alley, and Bluemix Garage in San Francisco’s Galvanize startup hub, all of which also host local tech community events and meet-ups. I like seeing this focus on community.
IBM is the leading enterprise platform for Cloud, with an unmatched portfolio of open cloud solutions to enable clients for the hybrid cloud era with integration, control over data and expertise. IBM Cloud has helped more than 30,000 clients around the world. Today, IBM has 100+ cloud SaaS solutions, thousands of experts with deep industry knowledge helping clients transform, and a growing global network of cloud centers. Since 2007, IBM has invested more than $7 billion in 17 acquisitions to accelerate its cloud initiatives. IBM holds 1,560 cloud patents focused on driving innovation. For more information about cloud offerings from IBM, visit http://www.ibm.com/cloud. Follow us on Twitter @IBMCloud and on our blog at www.thoughtsoncloud.com. Join the conversation #ibmcloud.
This post was brought to you by IBM for Midsize Business and opinions are my own. To read more on this topic, visit IBM’s Midsize Insider. Dedicated to providing businesses with expertise, solutions and tools that are specific to small and midsized companies, the Midsize Business program provides businesses with the materials and knowledge they need to become engines of a smarter planet.