The point of the Extreme Tech Challenge is to help entrepreneurs reduce the friction to scale. But let’s back up for a second. Do you know what I mean by “friction”? It’s all the stuff that gets in your way when you’re trying to take a great idea and build it into a great business. Technical challenges, lack of funds, lack of know-how and other tangible and intangible resources—it’s all friction.
The latest prize from XTC partner IBM goes a long way to eliminating a couple of those major lack-of-funds and lack-of-expert-resources issues. Building or buying (and then maintaining) cloud hosting infrastructure and databases takes a hefty percentage of a startup’s budget and (even worse) can distract your technical experts, who need to be focused on innovation, not infrastructure.
Enter IBM, which is generously offering all three XTC finalists FREE cloud infrastructure from SoftLayer, an IBM company.
It’s also offering FREE services from Cloudant, an IBM company that delivers IBM’s scalable, always-on NoSQL database as a service (DBaaS). These services give you control over your apps and data but take off the pressure of running all that infrastructure, so they can help you get you off the ground—and then some. With data centers all over the world, they can help you comply with data residency rules as you grow internationally.
Here are the details of what IBM is offering to help winners reach their goals:
➢ 3rd place, total value $15,000: $1,000 / month worth of cloud hosting and $250/month of Cloudant DBaaS usage for 12 months
➢ 2nd place, total value $30,000: $2,000 / month worth of cloud hosting and $500 per month of Cloudant DBaaS usage for 12 months
➢ 1st place, total value $39,000: $2,500 / month of cloud hosting and $750 per month of Cloudant DBaaS usage for 12 months.
And keep watching this space, because I’ll be posting info on more prizes soon!