Innovation is being given more attention in large corporations. According to our previous study, conducted with chief innovation officers and those in related roles, 70 percent of firms said they were increasing investment in their innovation units (60 percent of which had been created in the previous five years). 1 Corporate venturing (CV) mechanisms, in particular, are on the rise. 2 These tools act as a bridge between innovative startups and established firms.


This is not a new practice – large firms such as Intel, Siemens, Xerox, GE, IBM, Lucent and Merck have been developing this model for years. However, the pervasive impact of technology in all sectors demands a better understanding of how to make collaboration between established firms and start-ups work. Learning from the CV initiatives of 44 large firms, this study offers guidance for building, scaling and consolidating a CV practice.

Corporate Venturing

What will you learn

The practice of corporate venturing is emerging at a great speed. In 70% of the cases, large firms are increasing investment in their innovation units, 60% of which were created in the last five years. Particularly, the use of some innovation mechanisms of corporate venturing (the collaboration between established companies and innovative start-ups) have increased from 2% to 44% in recent years. Large companies such as Intel, Siemens, Xerox, GE, IBM, Lucent and Merck have developed these models for years: corporate accelerators and incubators,


scouting missions, corporate venture capital funds, hackathons, prize challenges, venture builders, to name a few. Despite best intentions, companies are still struggling and learning how to build, scale and consolidate their corporate venturing units. Based on 46 interviews with large firms' chief innovation officers (and related roles), the study provides insights and unique data for the implementation of these mechanisms, and best practices learnt from leading corporations.

Who made it possible

  • Mª Julia Prats
  • Josemaria Siota
  • Tommaso Canonici
  • Xavier Contijoch

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