Microsoft Ventures names start-ups for 2014 London Accelerator

Microsoft Ventures names start-ups for 2014 London Accelerator
James Batchelor

By James Batchelor

December 9th 2013 at 10:22AM

UK firms Gateway Interactive and 8 Bit Studios to begin 12-week programme in February

Microsoft has announced the new wave of companies that will take part in Microsoft Ventures’ London Accelerator programme.

The scheme has been piloted this year and provides support to start-ups for 12 weeks as they try to establish themselves as a business.

Twelve firms will be taking part in the 2014 programme, which kicks off on February 3rd. Two of these are gaming firms: Gateway Interactive, a studio based in the North East of England working on their inaugural title Pure Space, and 8-bit Studios, which is working on online multiplayer game Skara.

The successful applicants were named during a Microsoft event at London’s Canary Wharf, where the pilot companies of this year’s programme were able to show off their work and pitch for further support from other potential investors.

Two of the five pilot companies were games firms – Whispering Gibbon and GallantCloud – and all pilots have been invited to continue working with Microsoft at its new Accelerator headquarters, which is due to open in Whitechapel.

Microsoft UK’s managing director Michel Van der Bel told Develop: “These technology start-ups and entrepreneurs are the future success of our sector. The future of our economy will be based on the success of these start-ups.

“If I were an investor, I would be very happy to invest in these guys because I feel they are ready to establish themselves as a meaningful business. They’re not companies with a nice technology that will peak and fade away.”