Five years ago, Scott MacDonald and Whitney Rockley, the founders of McRock Capital, a venture capital firm focused on developing start-ups in Industrial Internet of Things, realized that in order to make the right investments and empower their companies, they needed to establish an eco-system of large industrial corporates and the start-ups who could transform their businesses. In 2012, they started with a simple meeting in a conference room, and have now progressed into a full-blown show, that even Hollywood would be envious of.
On May 18, 2017, with the backdrop of Montreal’s 375th anniversary celebration, McRock Capital held their 6th annual Industrial IoT Symposium. Cisco Investments, an investor in McRock and a key sponsor of this event, provided a presentation on our thought leadership in IoT. We also participated in a panel discussion on investing in this space.
Amit Chaturvedy, Cisco Investments IoT lead, discussed Cisco’s investment approach. “In the IoT space, we focus on 3 key trends. Fog computing, securing IoT, and application of artificial intelligence / machine learning techniques to create unique value proposition for IoT. We have been one of the most active investors in IoT, deploying over $60M over the last 3-4 years.” When asked what products or use cases simply do not resonate with him, with a smile, Amit responded, “If you are trying to make a connected toaster, please don’t come to me”.
Rick Huijbregts from Cisco’s Canada digital transformation team talked about how Cisco is driving the 3rd industrial revolution, a time when digital transformation will disrupt just about every business imaginable. Established offerings in video, cloud & edge, analytics, apps, and IoT uniquely position Cisco to transform industries.
The daylong event ended with a conversation with Billy Baldwin, of Backdraft fame and brother of Alec Baldwin, and his wife Chyna Phillips, lead singer of Wilson Phillips. Through conversation and song, their message to the start-ups and the entrepreneurs in the room…if you feel locked up in chains, if you feel stepped on, just let your worries pass you by and “hold on for one more day”!
About the Authors:
Amit Chaturvedy joined Cisco in 2014 and leads the global investment practice for Internet of Things (IoT). Prior to Cisco, Amit was at Summit Partners where he sourced and led investments in communications technology, financial services and consumer sectors in US, Europe and India. Previously, he was at Cummins Inc. where he designed software for diesel engines and led customer liaison activities for Daimler Chrysler Corporation. Amit also worked in the investment banking group at Citigroup, NY.
Amit received mechanical engineering degrees from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) – Bombay and Purdue University – West Lafayette and has an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Walter is a member of Cisco Investments Portfolio Development team, whose primary goal is to deliver differentiated value to the portfolio companies by leveraging Cisco’s business enablement infrastructure. Walter is a Cisco veteran and joined Cisco Investments from Cisco’s Collaboration Sales and Go-to-Market group, where he was responsible GTM strategy for Spark. Walter has worked in 7 different functional departments within Cisco, from sales and service, to product and manufacturing operations, to product management and sales/GTM strategy.
Walter holds an MBA degree from University of Southern California, and a BA from University of California, Los Angeles.