Winners of The Clouded Leopards Den 2015 competition

Date: Wed, 04/29/2015 - 13:58

Winners of The Clouded Leopards Den 2015 competition

Two start-ups walk away with top honours at the debut Clouded Leopards Den competition

OpenCloud Connect announced that two start-ups have been named as winners of The Clouded Leopards Den 2015 competition, which recognizes top innovative start-ups in two categories, early-stage innovators and later-stage, pre-IPO companies.

The two winners are:
Early Stage Winner: TapLink
"TapLink is honoured to have been selected as a finalist in the inaugural Clouded Leopard’s Den competition, and we are thrilled to take home the beautiful Clouded Leopard winner's trophy," said Jeremy Spilman, Founder and CTO of TapLink.
"The judges' endorsement of TapLink reinforces our belief that Blind Hashing provides a crucial layer of protection for cloud services by completely securing passwords against offline attack."
Later-Stage Pre-IPO Winner: Viptela
“Winning the Clouded Leopards Den competition is a great honor and another major milestone for Viptela,” said Lloyd Noronha, director of marketing for Viptela. “This recognition is further proof that our ability to address the cost, complexity and flexibility shortcomings of legacy wide area networks will positively disrupt enterprise markets”
The Clouded Leopards Den 2015 prize is sponsored by OpenCloud Connect (OCC), a global industry alliance founded in May 2013 to address the need for scaling and enhancing Ethernet technology to meet the stringent demands of delivering cloud services.
The OCC is creating an open test and standards development program for service providers, industry vendors and cloud companies and includes a dedicated proof of concept test laboratory based in Silicon Valley, to provide ongoing testing and support for the iterative development of OCC’s CloudE 1.0 open cloud framework/ 
The finalists for the Clouded Leopards Den 2015 were chosen by a panel of five top venture capitalists, technology innovators and industry luminaries, chaired by “Top Cat” Dr. Bob Metcalfe, Ethernet inventor and Professor of Innovation and Murchison Fellow of Free Enterprise at The University of Texas at Austin Cockrell School of Engineering.    
Dr. Metcalfe of the University of Texas at Austin said, “The winners of the 2015 Clouded Leopards Den competition are inventing the future. We salute all the nominees and finalists for their vision and creativity, and look forward to seeing all of these companies move on to future greatness.”
Rounding out the judging panel are Jim Lussier, Managing Director and Head of Dell Ventures; Janice Roberts, Partner in Benhamou Global Ventures; Dan Scheinman, an angel investor in high-growth emerging tech companies; and Murli Thirumale, Co-Founder and CTO of Portworx Inc.  
Nominations for the Clouded Leopards Den prize opened in early 2015, and a shortlist was chosen by a group of media and analyst judges. That shortlist was presented to the industry judging panel chaired by Dr. Metcalfe, from which a group of six finalists were chosen in mid-April.
The final stage in the Clouded Leopards Den competition was held at the NetEvents Global Cloud Innovation Summit in Tiburon, just north of San Francisco. The finalists, TapLink, Innovate Create, CENX, Viptela and Mirantis presented a “Shark Tank” or “Dragon’s Den”-style elevator pitch to the judges on the merits of their startup, and one winner was chosen from each category.

Above, Lloyd Noronha, director of marketing for Viptela


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