Microsoft Extends National NPower Agreement

SEATTLE, May 12, 2004 — NPower today announced the extension of Microsoft Corp.’s commitment to the NPower Network with a $3 million, two-year cash grant, building on the company’s initial $25 million (cash and software), five-year investment in the program. The Microsoft & NPower National Partnership was established in September 2000 in an effort to offer no-cost and low-cost technology assistance to build and strengthen the information technology (IT) capacity of nonprofit communities across the country.

In a time when today’s nonprofits are being challenged to do more with less, it has become increasingly important for nonprofits to have the latest technology resources in order to operate efficiently and effectively. Supported in part by Microsoft, NPower is a network of locally based nonprofits dedicated to helping other nonprofit agencies use technology to fulfill their missions and better serve their communities. Since the opening of the original NPower in Seattle, the network has expanded to include 12 NPower programs across the country that have served more than 4,500 nonprofits with technology services and have trained more than 10,000 nonprofit staff in the use of technology.

“NPower has become a leader in empowering nonprofits with technology tools and assistance to maximize their productivity,”
said Akhtar Badshah, senior director of Community Affairs at Microsoft.
“Microsoft is committed to supporting NPower’s efforts to provide nonprofits with technology tools and resources, thereby allowing them to focus more time and energy on providing valuable services to those in need.”

Over the past four years the NPower Network has successfully increased its funding base to include more than 70 local and national donors who have contributed at least $50,000 in cash or in-kind support. This backing has enabled the network to expand its services to include free* online tools, volunteer matching services, and low-cost consulting and training services, while reaching nonprofits in key parts of the country, including Arizona, California, Colorado, Georgia, Indiana, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Washington and Washington, D.C.

“Microsoft’s commitment to NPower has served as a catalyst for other individual and corporate donors to join our mission and contribute additional resources,”
said Jennifer Bright, interim executive director of NPower.
“As a result, we are able to help even more nonprofits across the country, and are working toward our goal of having a sustainable model that will allow us to continue to develop the tools and services nonprofits need in the future.”

In addition to continued financial support, Microsoft also will work with NPower to include local NPower programs in the eligibility for Microsoft® Unlimited Potential grants. Unlimited Potential (UP) is a global initiative focused on improving lifelong learning for underserved young people and adults by providing technology skills through community-based organizations around the world. Recipients of UP grants are public centers where people can gain IT skills and training to help themselves and their communities.

Microsoft also supports NPower through employee engagement programs, including on-site volunteers and trainers, and participation in NPower Boards across the country. With this additional financial commitment to the program, Microsoft will extend its agreement with NPower through 2007.

About NPower

NPower is a national network of local nonprofits that helps other nonprofits use technology to better serve their communities. NPower programs serve thousands of nonprofits nationwide by providing a suite of high-quality, affordable, unbiased technology services including assessment, planning, implementation, support and training. In addition, over 7,000 organizations use NPower’s free online technology planning tool, TechAtlas. Thanks to visionary founding investment from Microsoft, the NPower Network has expanded from one to twelve local NPowers since 1999. In total, over 70 foundations and corporations support NPower’s efforts to help more nonprofits in more communities use technology to create a better world. More information is available at http://www.npower.org/ .

About Microsoft

Microsoft began its philanthropic activities in 1983, which were among the first philanthropic efforts in the high-tech industry. Microsoft Unlimited Potential is a global program that focuses on improving lifelong learning for underserved young people and adults by providing technology skills through community-based technology and learning centers. Microsoft believes that by providing the necessary training and tools, it will help create social and economic opportunities that can transform communities and enable people to realize their potential. More information can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/mscorp/citizenship/.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
“MSFT”
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

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Microsoft Citizenship Community Affairs Fact Sheet 2004

Microsoft and its employees have long recognized the importance of being engaged in supporting communities around the world. In the last fiscal year, Microsoft contributed more than US$40 million in cash and $224 million in software to nearly 5,000 nonprofit organizations.