What is the Cisco Innovation Grand Challenge?

Cisco Innovation Grand Challenge aims to inspire, engage, and support the next generation of startups, entrepreneurs and developers that are capturing IoT/IoE opportunities. We are seeking submissions from early-stage businesses and teams which have technology-based ventures in development.


Why is Cisco driving the Innovation Grand Challenge?

  • Cisco’s global mission is to be at the forefront and to drive innovation. The challenge is a way to discover and support the development of breakthrough technologies, products or business models.
  • No one company can do it alone! The Challenge helps grow the IoE ecosystem and allows new valuable partnerships and solutions to emerge.


Will Cisco own submitted ideas?

No. When entrants submit their ideas, they are not transferring ownership of their idea submission to Cisco. Entrants continue to own their idea, and can continue to use and exploit it for any purpose, either independently or in partnership with anyone else.


Who can enter?

Cisco Innovation Grand Challenge is created to attract high-potential technology startups and developers that are seeking investment and support to accelerate their development. This global competition is open to individuals, teams, and legal entities from around the world.


How are the ideas judged?

The entries will be judged based on a combination of the following factors:

  • Customer value
  • Market opportunity, including potential for growth
  • Novelty, including perceived differentiation from competition
  • Fit with Cisco and/or partners business strategy
  • Likelihood of long-term success.


Who will be participating in the judging panel?

The competition will have 3 separate judging panels: for semifinalist selection, for finalist selection and for winner selection. The panels will include Cisco and Industry experts. The jury pool is designed to ensure an expert representation that reflects the market specifics of submitted entries. We will be announcing the judging panel as judging starts.


Will Cisco take any investment in the winning companies? 

The prize is not tied to any investment or Intellectual Property in the winning companies.  Entrants continue to own their idea, and can continue to use and exploit it for any purpose, either independently or in partnership with anyone else. At the same time, we are hoping to build relationships with qualified entrants that may lead to investments or other partnerships with Cisco.


Will the winners be incubated?

We are planning to spotlight the winners in Cisco’s IoE Innovation Centers. Each winner’s needs might be different and we will evaluate additional partnerships opportunities, which may include incubation or joint solution development at a later stage.


What is the Internet of Things Word Forum (IoTWF)?

The Internet of Things World Forum (IoTWF) is an exclusive annual event that brings together the best and brightest thinkers, practitioners, and innovators from business, government, and academia to accelerate the market adoption of the Internet of Things. More information @ https://www.iotwf.com/