5. Microsoft BizSpark
In some start-up competitions, you’ve very much got to play by the sponsor’s rules – to the point that you have to use their product or service to be able to compete.
The Microsoft BizSpark program is open to all-comers – as long as you use Microsoft technology. Last year, taxi location app goCatch beat eight other finalists to be named winner of Microsoft’s APAC Startup 2012 Award.
GoCatch beat an impressive field of rivals to land the $5000 prize, including customised jewellery maker StyleRocks, New Zealand-based HR tool Avancert and Melbourne start-up Sound Gecko, which converts online articles into audio files.
All of the finalists are part of Microsoft’s BizSpark program, which aims to foster start-ups.