It will offer start-ups opportunities to “bid” for business challenges that its various brands are looking to solve.
In an interview with The Drum, Pete Blackshaw, global head of digital and social media at Nestlé, said:
“…the way that will work is we will take businesses challenges from within Nestlé. That might be how to figure out the next generation Nescafe or figure out the Internet of Things for Nespresso, and it will allow entrepreneurial technology start-ups to almost bid for the opportunity and then we have to respond in a certain amount of time.”
The platform is going to be called Henri@Nestlé (Henri Nestlé was the German-born Swiss confectioner who founded Nestlé) and is an extension of the company’s ongoing open innovation activities, such as the Silicon Valley Innovation Outpost. This was launched in 2013 to help advance digital innovation, helping the multinational to think about its brands beyond product.
Henri@Nestlé will present an ongoing series of business challenges on a variety of themes. Successful applicants will receive funding and the opportunity to partner with Nestlé to pilot and scale up their solution.
Nestlé is keen to point out that the platform will have a peer-to-peer feel as opposed to a top down approach. They say it’s not about one large company using and taking advantage of a small outfit, but a partnership between equal co-creators.