I am excited to introduce you to our new blog & website. This is where we plan to share our thoughts on the next big ideas that will shape & disrupt our industry & the world of the Internet of Things/Everything (IoT/IoE). We also plan to give you updates on Cisco EIR’s activities, including the latest news on our startups, program events & partners around the world. Or, we may just share whatever is on our mind.
A look back: A very fast start
We have come a long way since launching Cisco EIR late last summer. We unveiled our original website in August 2013, issuing a call to entrepreneurs working on game-changing products in the IoE, cloud computing, Big Data, analytics and other transformational technologies.
We had no idea what kind of response we would receive for our new program.
The results were beyond excellent: over 150 high-caliber startups applied to join our program. After several dozens of interviews & demo events with amazing startup founders, we were thrilled to announce our first cohort of entrepreneurs in April. Our Spring 2014 entrepreneurs – 6 startups hailing from 3 countries – are now about halfway through our 6-month program.
A look ahead: Fostering open innovation at Cisco
Our goal with Cisco EIR was to give Cisco a presence in the early-stage startup community – where we had traditionally been a little shy to engage entrepreneurs. We heard from many early-stage startups that it could be difficult to build relationships with Cisco. Cisco EIR is starting to change that.
Mala Anand, senior vice president of Cisco Services Platforms Group, described Cisco EIR as a key component of an open innovation strategy at Cisco in her recent Cisco blog article. Cisco EIR serves as a catalyst for startups innovating in technology areas that have the potential to disrupt & transform our industry. We are thrilled to have an opportunity to support & engage these startups.
Take a tour of our new website
We are launching our new website at an exciting time:
- We are accepting applications for our Fall 2014 cohort & are expanding our team of advisors & mentors.
- We have teamed up with Chicago Innovation Exchange (CIE) to launch CiscoEIR@CIE, a joint incubation program supporting startups in the Chicago area. Through our partnership with CIE, we hope to connect with talented local entrepreneurs – many of whom will be drawn from the University of Chicago, Argonne National Laboratory, Northwestern University & local accelerators/incubators.
- We are collaborating with EvoNexus – a leading startup incubator in San Diego – to launch CiscoEIR@EvoNexus, a joint incubation program that will help expand our reach to the San Diego region. We are excited about tapping into the immense talent of the area – known for its deep mobility & defense-related technologies.
- The Cisco EIR team and our entrepreneurs had fun and great conversations with aspiring entrepreneurs at TiEcon 2014 last month. We hope to see many of them apply to join our program in the near future.
This is just a taste. We have numerous other activities in the works – events, partnerships & opportunities for entrepreneurs to participate in our program in various ways.
So, I invite you to take a tour around our new blog, bookmark our website & connect with us on social media (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & Google+) to stay up to date on our news. We will have a lot of updates to share in the coming weeks & months.