BANGALORE, India - October 31, 2007 - In conjunction with the opening of Cisco's Globalisation Centre East in Bangalore, India, Cisco® today announced the Cisco I-Prize, a competition open to entrepreneurs and innovators around the world. The Cisco I-Prize aims to bring together global teams to develop technology business ideas using Cisco's collaboration technologies and to run those ideas through Cisco's process for identifying emerging technologies to take to market. The winning team may have the opportunity to join Cisco as founders of a new emerging technology business unit. Depending on the value of the idea, Cisco may also invest up to $10 million over three years to fund the new business unit.
Cisco's heritage is based on connecting people and the rise of Internet-driven collaboration technologies provides a new opportunity to connect to and help innovators build their ideas into viable businesses. Using the power of the network on a global scale and taking advantage of emerging collaboration process and tools, Cisco hopes to find new business ideas from contestants from around the world.
"There are large parts of the world where inventors and entrepreneurs don't have ready access to venture capital or other means of funding, but they have excellent ideas. We want to give those innovators an outlet and a means to develop their dream," said Marthin DeBeer, senior vice president, Cisco's Emerging Technologies Group. "The emergence of collaboration technologies and the growth of the network are driving a rapid evolution in the way we work. Cisco believes we can open up new idea pipelines by closing those geographical gaps and at the same time infuse new ideas into Cisco's culture of innovation."
The Cisco I-Prize was announced by DeBeer, who appeared at the grand opening of Cisco's Globalisation Centre East in Bangalore, India, via next-generation Cisco TelePresence experiences. More information on Cisco's Globalisation Centre East can be found at http://newsroom.cisco.com/globalisation/.
The Cisco I-Prize Details
Entries will be evaluated in much the same way that Cisco assesses new internal business ideas for its Emerging Technologies Group, which is home to new business ventures such as Cisco TelePresence and Cisco Digital Media System. Judges will consider both the technology innovation as well as the business opportunity behind the idea. Ideas should have the potential to bring in at least $1 billion revenue to Cisco over a five- to seven-year period, and submissions must use the IP network as a platform. In later rounds, contestants may be provided access to a variety of Cisco collaboration tools including WebEx Meeting Center, WebEx WebOffice, and the opportunity to use TelePresence meeting rooms in Cisco locations around the world.
The Cisco I-Prize is open to individuals age 18 and older. Cisco employees and family members are not eligible to participate. To view the Contest rules and to submit entries, please visit http://www.cisco.com/iprize.