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Cisco launches $1bn smart city fund

Fund to help cities access smart solutions and technologies

Cisco launches $1bn smart city fund
Cisco's new fund is intended to help make smart city projects a reality, says Menon.

Cisco has announced a new $1 billion program to provide funding and financial services for new smart city initiatives.

The City Infrastructure Financing Acceleration Program is intended to make it easier, faster, and more affordable for cities around the world to fund and adopt technologies that will transform their communities.

The funding will be provided through Cisco Capital in partnership with private equity firm Digital Alpha Advisors and pension fund investors APG Asset Management (APG) and Whitehelm Capital.

"Funding is a major stumbling block for municipalities beginning their smart city transformation," said Anil Menon, Global President of Cisco's Smart+Connected Communities. "With our partners, Cisco will bring the capital and expertise it takes to make smart city projects a reality. Digital Alpha, APG, and Whitehelm Capital bring a fresh perspective on investment in an area that has previously been perceived as too new and, therefore, too difficult to finance."

The program helps cities assemble the right type or suite of finance instruments to fund and deploy innovative technology with minimal initial investment. The program will include facilities such as revenue-share financing, which allows a city to tie financing to desired outcomes and extend future operating budgets through revenue streams from the new services that a digitized infrastructure makes possible.

Cisco also announced that it has expanded its Cisco Kinetic for Cities connected digital platform, with new features for public safety. The platform, which has been integrated with the Cisco Kinetic IoT data platform, now includes new full-policy automation options, improved dashboard with integrated video, and real-time notification of emergency information from IoT sources.

Cisco has also announced new purchasing options for Cisco Kinetic for Cities, including prepackaged starter solutions, which combine the Cisco IoT data platform, solution, and services from Cisco partners into ready-to-roll-out, end-to-end solution suites.

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