July 02, 2016: US-based global technology company Cisco on Wednesday unveiled ‘LaunchPad’, an open innovation initiative to accelerate startups and support growth among India’s young developer community with an intent to support “Startup India” campaign.
Accelerator LaunchPad is an opportunity to be part of an innovation ecosystem. In addition to technology and business mentorship, LaunchPad offers startups a worldwide Go-To-Market engine to validate and scale innovative ideas.
“We have an unprecedented opportunity to digitise the next three billion people in one-third the time it took to connect the first three billion. Through ‘LaunchPad’, we want to unleash the next generation of disruptive ideas and help turn the entrepreneurs of today into the business leaders of tomorrow,” told Amit Phadnis, President, Engineering and India Site Leader.
He further added, “We would wish to take this initiative to state governments as before we digitise the next three billion, connecting the few millions in our country with our strong go to market capabilities is the first challenge.”
Through ‘LaunchPad’, the startups will get an opportunity to work on solving business relevant problems by catering to use cases that are identified and validated by Cisco go-to-market teams.
The initiative will initially focus on manufacturing, retail, transportation, education and healthcare sector.
The US networking major earlier this year announced a planned series of strategic investments in India that will total over $100 million including $40 million to fund early-stage and growth-stage companies in the country and train 250,000 students in India by 2020.
Cisco will provide a space at its Bangalore campus with access to a suite of Cisco technologies and free grants to startups chosen to work at its campus. 4-6 startups will be selected for each cohort. Startups will also have access to industry leading Cisco technology platforms in Wireless/Mobility, IoT, Collaboration, Security, Networking and Cloud. The program will end with a demo day where the startups will present their ideas to prominent investors, Cisco leadership and industry experts.
The last date for applications is July 22, 2016.