At an event in London yesterday afternoon, Amazon CTO Werner Vogels pledged the company’s support to UK startups, announcing two initiatives that offers personal support to fledgling companies in the UK.
Amazon Web Services (AWS) is the e-commerce giant’s enterprise arm, letting companies tap into cloud-based Web services. And from October this year, it’s setting up a free service based in London’s Tech City offering one-on-one support at The Hoxton Mix in East London.
UK startups will receive advice from an Amazon Web Services’ expert, including free IT help for one day every week. Startups will receive face-to-face support in planning and moving their technology infrastructure to the cloud, have their questions on cloud computing answered and receive help in overcoming any AWS related technology issues they may be facing.
The service will run every Wednesday, beginning on October 5th, and is open to all startups in the UK. This will be in addition to other basic support services, such as forums and technical FAQs, currently available to startups online. So how can you tap into this service? You can make an appointment by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The second initiative is free cloud computing training courses, open to 120 people from startups across the UK which offer technical training sessions on AWS.
The course will involve learning how to build scalable, and affordable, architectures and an opportunity to get hands-on with the technology. The courses are running in London and Manchester. Spaces for the training will be allocated on a first come, first served basis so if you’re interested you can register your interest for the London course (29th November) or the Manchester course (1st December).
AWS has been involved in a number of promotional/support initiatives for startups, including the 5th annual startup challenge, which aims to find the most innovative startup using Amazon Web Services. Entries close on October 2nd.
And last year, we reported that Amazon was launching the AWS Free Usage Tier, aimed at encouraging new businesses to use its cloud-based services by offering free access to an Amazon EC2 Micro Instance for one year.
It seems that many of the big digital companies are becoming increasingly interested in getting involved with startups. As we reported with Seedcamp earlier this month, the funding and incubation programme has partnered with a number of large companies, including Facebook, which gives them easier access to innovation whilst also opens doors for startups to gain potential (big) customers and expert insights. Part of the partnerships include what’s called the Founders Pack, where over £50,000 of value in services is offered by big companies, whilst other companies such as Google and AWS are also involved as sponsors.
We can probably see a number of similar initiatives launched in the months and years ahead from the big tech firms, as they seek to get startups on board from an early stage.