Cisco Canada, together with Canada's Finance Minister, the Hon. Joe Oliver, announced the Cisco Canada Innovation Program, a strategy to invest $150 million (CAD$) to support and accelerate innovation in Canada. Cisco Investments, through a combination of investments in venture-capital funds, incubators and direct, seeks to drive creative and ambitious innovation in Canada, in addition to providing Cisco technology and go-to-market expertise to Canadian business.
Cisco plans to invest across a mix of technologies, businesses, and investment stages over the next 10 years, and will actively engage with investment partners and start-ups to mentor and develop new leaders and innovators. Through the Cisco Canada Innovation Program, Cisco is encouraging other corporations to recognize Canada's tremendous talent, innovation and commercialization opportunities and to increase their investments.
The Cisco Canada Innovation Program will focus on three key areas:
- Direct Technology Sector Investment: will investigate opportunities in areas such as cloud infrastructure, digital media, big data/analytics/information management, intelligent infrastructure and mobility.
- Venture Capital Investment: will drive the innovation engine in the country, cover a broad spectrum of technology, provide Cisco with visibility into the Canadian start-up community and build on Cisco's relationship with the Canadian government.
- Working with Incubators: will provide mentorship and technology support to early-stage companies to stimulate industrial, service provider, and enterprise solutions.
According to CB Insights, Cisco's global venture capital investments are among the most successful in the world. Over the last 20 years, Cisco has invested in hundreds of companies across different segments and helped them build to successful IPOs or acquisitions. Cisco currently has an active portfolio of USD $2B with over 80 direct investments around the world, and we also hold Limited Partner positions in over 35 funds globally.
Joe Oliver, Minister of Finance
"Innovation and investment are the key drivers of the Canadian economy, leading to jobs, growth and long-term prosperity. Cisco Canada's investment will create jobs across Canada and help turn the entrepreneurs of today into the business leaders of tomorrow."
Nitin Kawale, President, Cisco Canada
"Cisco believes there is a tremendous opportunity for growth and prosperity in Canada's innovation engine. Canada continues to produce some of the top engineering and management talent in the world and is home to dynamic industries that are ripe for business transformation. We believe the Cisco Canada Innovation Program is a great opportunity to fund and mentor start-up companies, foster innovation and help Canada be recognized among the most innovative countries in the world."
Hilton Romanski, Senior Vice President, Corporate Development, Cisco
"Canada is a great place to do business, with tremendous potential for innovative ideas. Cisco's investment focus is on strategic opportunities that align with our business today and with potential future disruptions that may shape the broader, global market and ecosystem. We see many opportunities in Canada and look forward to enhancing our global portfolio with additional venture funding in Canada's innovation ecosystem."