Cisco’s $100 million global innovation centre comes to Canada

The city of Toronto was selected as the site for Cisco Systems new global innovation centre.

The facility is pegged to represent more than $100 million in investment for the region over the next 10 years and is aimed at fostering local innovation, while improving economic development specific to the massive Internet of Everything market opportunity.

The Cisco global innovation centre will actually be called the Internet of Everything Innovation Centre and be one of four the networking giant is building.

Cisco’s global innovation centre in Canada further’s company CEO John Chambers Canadian strategy. Recent Canadian investments from Cisco include:

  • Up to $4 billion over 10 years to expand Cisco’s footprint in Ontario and create up to 1,700 new jobs;
  • Multimillion dollar investment to establish research chairs, professorships and innovation centres at 10 universities across Canada; and
  • Signing on as a Premier Partner in the 2015 Pan Am/Para Pan Am Games.

The Toronto facility will join Songdo, South Korea; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; and Germany as one of four centres announced worldwide.

Rob Lloyd, president of development and sales Cisco, said the Internet of Everything is a $19 trillion global opportunity over the next decade – including almost $500 billion available to Canadian private and public-sector organizations.

“Today, much of that opportunity is left on the table. Cisco Innovation Centres help to accelerate and catalyze IoE opportunities for our customers by developing expertise and partnerships in key verticals. Cisco Canada has become a leader in Smart+Connected Communities development and the establishment of this IoE Innovation Centre is further testament to Cisco’s ongoing investment in Canada, Ontario and Toronto,” Lloyd said.

Also with this centre, Cisco is asking the channel along with other IT thought leaders to rethink and transform the status quo. The intent here is for the Cisco innovation centre to be a North American hub for thought leadership and experimentation and a place that brings start-ups, technology and services partners, academia and customers together to focus on the Internet of Everything opportunity and Smart+Connected solutions.

The Toronto IoE Innovation Centre is slated to be approximately 15,000 square feet in the Oxford Properties’ new RBC WaterPark Place and is scheduled for completion in the spring 2015.

RBC is positioning the WaterPark Place to be one of North America’s smartest office tower. It will also be the future home of Cisco Canada.

Nitin Kawale, president of Cisco Canada, said the innovation centres are a key pillar of Cisco’s strategy to impact the productivity and innovation trajectory of Canada.

“The Internet of Everything is not only changing the world, but creating new opportunities. Connecting the unconnected has the potential to bring revolutionary change to industries, including: healthcare, education, municipalities, transportation and construction. With this IoE Innovation Centre, Cisco aims to help create new markets and solutions and establish a hotbed for experimentation,” he said.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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