Software giant Microsoft plans to mentor and support start-up entrepreneurs in the southern districts of Tamil Nadu through its partnership with Native Lead Foundation (NLF), a Madurai-based non-profit organisation.

Kattayil Rajinish Menon, Director-Applications Ecosystem and Start-up Strategy, Microsoft, interacted with start-up entrepreneurs and students in the city on Thursday. “Having supported various ventures in tier-I cities, we have planned to mentor start-up entrepreneurs in tier-II cities. In Madurai, more than 300 ideas were presented and some of them were very interesting,” Mr. Menon said on Friday.

Microsoft would help entrepreneurs generate and nurture ideas, give assistance through a network of local mentors and experts from different domains and support them in marketing, he said.

Sivarajah Ramanathan, founder and director of NLF, said at least 50 powerful brands would be launched in the next three years through the venture. “We are planning to launch a web portal through which entrepreneurs will be able to interact with people in Microsoft. We will support enterprises from different spheres such as agriculture, information technology, mechanical and civil engineering,” Mr. Sivarajah said.

Microsoft and NLF would work together in 10 districts in south Tamil Nadu, he added.

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