Last week Cisco, along with Canada's Finance Minister Joe Oliver, announced the Cisco Canada Innovation Program. This program will invest $150 million to support and accelerate innovation in Canada.
"Innovation and investment are the key drivers of the Canadian economy, leading to jobs, growth and long-term prosperity,” said Oliver. “Cisco Canada's investment will create jobs across Canada and help turn the entrepreneurs of today into the business leaders of tomorrow."
The money will be invested across a mix of technologies, businesses, and investment stages over the next 10 years and Cisco says it will actively engage with partners and start-ups to mentor and develop new leaders and innovators.
Cisco also says it is hoping to encourage other corporations to recognize Canada's tremendous talent, innovation and commercialization opportunities.
"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,” said Nitin Kawale, President, Cisco Canada.
“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,” said Kawale.
The Cisco Canada Innovation Program will focus on three key areas. The first is direct technology sector investment, investigating opportunities in areas such as cloud infrastructure, digital media, big data, intelligent infrastructure and mobility.
The second, venture capital investment, will cover a broad spectrum of technology and provide Cisco with insight on the Canadian start-up community as well build on Cisco's relationship with the Canadian government.
The third stage is working with incubators. Cisco promised to provide mentorship and technology support to early-stage companies to stimulate industrial, service provider, and enterprise solutions.