Anuj Bidve, 23, was shot in the head at point-blank range as he walked with friends near their hotel in the inner-city Ordsall district of the city, in the early hours of December 26.
The murder of the Indian student is being treated by detectives at Greater Manchester Police (GMP) as a "hate crime" which may have been racially motivated.
Today senior officers from the force announced the cash reward and said they hoped it would help get the killer gunman caught as soon as possible.
Det Chief Supt Mary Doyle, leading the murder inquiry, said: "It is an extremely unusual, savage and motiveless attack, an absolutely horrific crime, which is why we are taking the step of issuing it (the reward) a bit earlier than we normally would.
"We absolutely understand the need to take whoever is responsible for this off the streets.
"That's the reason we are issuing it now at such an early stage."
Often rewards are offered by the police weeks or months after the crime.
Assistant Chief Constable Dawn Copley, from GMP, speaking at a news conference at the force HQ in Manchester, said: "We are going to issue a reward here and now, for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for Anuj's murder.
"That reward is £50,000.