Cisco announces LaunchPad to boost technology innovation in India

Cisco announced LaunchPad, an open innovation initiative to boost the start-up and techprenure communities. LaunchPad is specially designed to facilitate startups, its authorised channel partners and developers scale their solutions, address new markets and build digital businesses. Through this initiative Cisco’s top experts will mentor startups and developers on how to help create digital solutions to enable enterprise customers, service providers and other enablers in the public and private sphere Cisco will also offer a space at its Bengaluru campus with access to a suite of Cisco technologies and free grants to startups chosen to work at its campus.
Sharing the idea, Amit Phadnis, President-Engineering and India Site Leader, expressed: “Imagine the innovation you will create when you provide global scale to the best ideas of the world’s youngest startup nation and second biggest developer community. We have an unprecedented opportunity to digitize the next three billion people in one-third the time it took to connect the first three billion. Through Cisco LaunchPad we want to unleash the next generation of disruptive ideas and help turn the entrepreneurs of today into the business leaders of tomorrow.”
Notably, Bengaluru is the home to the highest number of technology start-ups in India. The city renders a powerful combination of talent and infrastructure coupled with business, academic, and research proficiency. India is the youngest startup and developer nation in the world which has 72% of startup founders less than 35 years old and the average developer are less than 29 years old. India is projected to have the world’s largest number of developers before 2018.
KS Vishwanathan, Vice President, NASSCOM, opined: “Innovation and investment are the key drivers of the Indian economy, leading to jobs, growth and long-term prosperity. India is a hotbed of entrepreneurial talent and Cisco LaunchPad will be a tremendous accelerator for startups to develop digital solutions that reach a global market.”
Cisco LaunchPad will involve a rigorous selection process based on the commercial viability of applicants’ business models, the strength of their team members and their alignment with Cisco’s digitization vision.  Through LaunchPad, aspiring start-ups shall 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 LaunchPad program will focus on the innovation and monetization opportunities in these industries and will help unlock new markets. The successful applicants will have remarkable access to Cisco, the company’s channel partner ecosystem and select customers. LaunchPad will also offer start-ups a worldwide go-to-market engine to validate and scale innovative ideas.
As an example of the powerful innovation possible through Cisco LaunchPad, Cisco and Tech Mahindra Limited announced a collaboration to develop digital solutions for the Indian electric utilities. Cisco and Tech Mahindra will work with select startups and developers to accelerate digitization of the power sector and transform the way electricity is delivered to and used by people.
Speaking on the occasion L. Ravichandran, President and COO, Tech Mahindra, said: “Digitization is disrupting every industry and that is especially true in the energy sector. We are working closely with Cisco to bring the power of digitization to millions of people. Cisco LaunchPad is an excellent platform for Tech Mahindra to help solve some of the complex emerging market problems like the energy management, healthcare access and intelligent manufacturing. We are also committed to the Digital India and Make in India initiatives taken up by the government of India.”
Cisco already runs Cisco Digitization Acceleration and Cisco Investment programs in India.  The Cisco LaunchPad initiative is the latest addition towards that project.
Image courtesy: ndtv.com

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