Cisco taps Australian expertise for global venture

Cisco Systems has turned to Australia for assistance in enabling its vision of “intelligent urbanisation”.

The networking giant has taken an ownership stake in Australian firm Majitek, which provides SOA-based services centred around grid and cloud computing.

The equity investment, part of a wider US$7.5 million funding round for Majitek, was made last month, at approximately the same time Cisco unveiled its Intelligent Urbanisation blueprint.

According to Majitek’s website, the company's software platform “enables any device or system connected to a network to be accessed on a pay per use basis”.

The site goes on: “Combined with its highly scalable cloud computing architecture, it is positioned to enable all devices and systems within an entire city to be offered as ‘utility services’.”

Hence Cisco’s interest in Majitek’s technology as part of an Intelligent Urbanisation intiative.

The deal involves more than just Cisco taking an equity stake in Majitek; the two companies will partner on the Intelligent Urbanisation initiative. Majitek also plans to work with Cisco’s eastern Globalisation Centre in Bangalore, on a software platform that will “enable the creation and delivery of innovative services for the real estate industry and others, including transportation, smart-grid and safety and security”.

According to Majitek, “this platform will serve as an enabler to intelligent urbanisation, realising the city-as-a-service vision in emerging markets”.

Cisco’s Intelligent Urbanisation initiative was launched at the Bangalore centre on February 12.

Cisco has its sights set on providing or managing networks that coordinate infrastructure for cities in the future. According to the CyberMedia India Online website, Cisco CEO John Chambers said at the lauch that the emphasis of the project will be on creating integrated management systems for public safety and security, transportation, buildings, energy, healthcare and education.

“A number of counties have already shown their interest in the Cisco initiative and I hope each of those verticals will be a $1 billion business for Cisco in a few years,” he said.

Cisco is already on the way to providing services around Intelligent Urbanisation; it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the state government of Karnataka, the Indian province of which Bangalore is the capital, to develop a roadmap for an "intelligent" and sustainable Bangalore.

Majitek has a number of clients in Australia including Telstra, Suncorp and the Australian Medical Council. It has a three-product offering, comprising the Majitek Grid System, Majitek Cloud System and Majitek Edge System.

According to Majitek, “Our software enables and enterprise to deliver its core capabilities — on demand – over an IP network”.

The proportion of the US$7.5 million Majitek funding round that was provided by Cisco wasn’t specified.

Several members of the Majitek management team were with early Australian internet company Sausage Software, including Sausagae Software founder Steve Outtrim.

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