I'm considering enrollment on the Microsoft BizSpark program. The aim is to keep a my software license costs to the absolute minimum while I try to get this business started sometime by the end of this fall. Meanwhile I do qualify for BizSpark, in case you are wondering.
I'd however like to hear from anyone who has or had experience with the program: What's your take on the program, do you like(ed) it, or should I instead cough up the $$ for a MSDN subscription because I'll be better served for some reason.
The software offerings (PDF link. See apendix A) are a perfect match, so that's not an issue; au contraire. More curious about other aspects like the partnership model, or support.
Sounds like another sweatshop farm to me :p
Originally Posted by Mario F.
Well, proceeded with the enrollment and received a positive reply the next day after they did whatever checks they do for this thing. It's that fast!
You don't even need for the business to be formally established yet (which is the case). But as long as you are already doing active software development under its banner, you are good to go.
The software and services offering is staggering. The link on my previous post isn't so obvious. This is a full VSTS Team Suite MSDN Premium subscription for 3 long years, ladies and gentlemen! Around 30,000 USD value. There's a few limitations concerning support offerings and the licensing mechanism doesn't allow for the deployment/sales unless the end product qualifies as "software as a service". That isn't going to be our case. But the benefits are still huge, since we can basically delay buying any Microsoft product, including operating systems, during the whole development stage. Software is also only available through download.
The licenses also extend indefinitely. So, even after the 3 years are over you can still use them as long as you respect the licenses agreement (essentially only for software development).
I've done a quick check on the now active MSDN subscription on all the software available to us, and this is the whole Microsoft product line. Windows 7 is there already and well outside the current public RC offering, as is Studio 2010 beta, along with the whole other shebang; from development tools, to office tools, server and development tools. With versions dating as back as the 90s.
Finally you become also part of a BizSpark business network that has the potential to facilitate contacts between companies searching for investors, partners and even customers.
If you are in the process of starting a business, or are already in business for less than 3 years, didn't go public and so far can't go above 1 mil USD annual revenue, I really advise this program.