Today we’ve successfully completed the IoT Innovation Grand challenge that was announced in April 2014. When Cisco embarked on this journey, our goal was to discover, recognize, promote and reward innovators, entrepreneurs and early-stage startup businesses with innovative ideas and solutions for IoT.

With over 800 submissions from 71 countries, the response has been absolutely amazing. We have received a diverse set of ideas that ranged from connected home to cognitive computing, connected manufacturing and advanced communications systems. Out of these submissions 19 teams advanced to Semifinals and 6 teams advanced to Finals.

All 6 Finalists joined us at the IoT World Forum to showcase their solutions to over 1900 attendees. On day one of the Forum, we’ve held live event where Finalists pitched their ideas to the audience and judges.

For the judging, I was joined by David Borlo from Crestlight Venture Partners, Aldo de Jong from Startupbootcamp, Whitney Rockley from McRock Capital, Rob Salvagno from Cisco, Rebeca Scholl from Xerox and Howard Tullman from 1871. Judges evaluated the ideas based on market opportunity, level of uniqueness, and the management team’s ability to succeed.  Choosing the 3 winners was not an easy task and we’ve had quite a debate!

Now, on to the winners that will share $250,000 dollars in prizes:

  • 1st place – $150,000
    • Relayr (Berlin, Germany) is providing simple and inexpensive tools that will accelerate developers’ ability to take advantage of IoT and start programming for the physical world around us.
  • 2nd place – $75,000
    • Waygum.io (Dublin, California) is connecting mobile devices to machinery and empowering developers to create mobile-enabled industrial applications.
  • 3rd place – $25,000
    • Toymail (Gross Points, Michigan) is changing how the world plays by bringing IoT to toys and fostering communication between children and their families.

I want to thank each and every participant of the Challenge and I hope they will continue innovating and developing their ventures. What matters the most is having faith in your ideas, taking risks and being open to change. The Jury and I were quite impressed by many contestants and we wish them luck in their ventures!


Maciej Kranz

Vice President and General Manager

Corporate Strategic Innovation Group