Telefónica invests $200M in new innovation initiative, seeks partners

Telefónica committed $200 million (€175 million) to the formation of an investment platform that it said will help drive the creation and supply of new products and services for its customers in Europe and Latin America.

Through the Telefónica Open Future programme, which integrates all open innovation initiatives of the group, the Spain-based operator is teaming up with the Coral investment group to establish the Communications Investment Platform (CIP).

"As a leader in the CIP, Telefónica Open Future is establishing itself as a front runner in forming 'innovation factories' to accelerate the creation of new and disruptive technologies to benefit Telefónica's 320 million customers," the company said.

The two partners also hope to add up to four more communication service providers to the CIP, taking the total potential investment sum to up to $1 billion.

Telefónica added that is combining the efforts of CIP and Telefonica's existing research, investment and innovation programmes, "in order to enhance the return on Telefónica's future capital investments (more than $7.5 billion in 2014) and help transform the company into a major market player in areas such as next generation networks, big data and machine learning, and the Internet of Things."

It further noted that the investment in CIP supplements Telefónica Open Future's initiatives and support for global technology entrepreneurs and startups.

Telefónica Open Future integrates initiatives including openfuture.org online platform, Open Future crowd working spaces, Wayra acceleration academies, Amerigo Funds, Telefónica Ventures, and now CIP.

For more:
- see this Telefónica release

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