I was honored to participate in the 4th Open Innovation Summit, which this year was, as expected, conducted in a virtual fashion. There were many interesting talks and case studies by colleagues from Airbus, Sacyr, ABB; Daimler, Pepsico or Roche, among many others.
During the event, I could corroborate the known fact that all these corporates are facing similar challenges around how they can establish better ties wit the entrepreneurial ecosystem around the following axis:
- Access to ideas & startups: Improving scouting, internal creativity and cooperation with VCs and angel investors as strategic partners.
- Processes: enabling fast tracks for startups, easing procurement, legal and integration barriers.
- Tools: Adopting tools for each of the different activities, mimicking existing VCs tech stacks, from CRMs to AI powered engines.
- Culture: Helping to battle risk aversion and fostering a culture of experimentation and open mind in the whole organization.
- Scale: Translating UX research and POCs into battle tested products which can reach thousands of costumers recurrently.
- Ecosystems and platforms: creation of tech powered relations, where all the participants find value and network effects are created by adding new members.
- Metrics: defining how success should look like, what is the direct and the induced impact of Open Innovation, keeping in mind the ripple effect that innovation creates around the whole company.
My presentation was intended to present some of our learnings at Telefonica and Wayra, after conducting more than 100 investments in early stage startups over the last 3 years. And I wanted to showcase how Open Innovation initiatives can be specially relevant for corporates in times of change, like the ones we are living these days with the pandemia.
Startups can pivot quicker and more easily than corporates and hence adapt to changing contour conditions, while corporates still can benefit from the agility of the «Gazelles» to find new products and services, which will serve those new behavioral patterns in our customers and bring those products to scale thanks to our distribution capacities.
The new normal should be more about the new than the normal as my friend Marek Fodor loves to tell, and I feel there is a perfect storm for disruption being formed around the tectonic shift in core technologies such as AI, IoT, Blockchain and 5G/Edge as an enabler with low latency and enormous broadband. Entrepreneurs will be able to thrive despite the economic crisis, surfing these enormous tech waves with a remote first, purely digital structure with global reach. Particularly considering that there is a lot of funding muscle in the market after the latest closing of VC funds at both sides of the pond.
You can find my complete presentation here: