With the revolution of electric vehicles underway, Niterra, a pioneer manufacturer of key elements in combustion engines, recognised the need to diversify into other businesses. Their global innovation division then created The Venture Lab, a business creation team tasked to establish $1Bn in new revenue streams in the areas of mobility (charging technologies), energy and environment (air handling, low energy consumption air conditioning, aquaculture), and health (home health, women’s health, wound healing, and respiratory care) by 2030.
Their team saw the need to be immersed in a network of groundbreaking startups and to identify opportunities to potentially invest in and collaborate with.
Ideation and benchmark
Hello Tomorrow’s Consulting team kicked off a series of workshops to research and prioritize the different opportunity spaces within the Venture Lab’s three main topics, before deciding to focus on ‘at-home health’: digital healthcare from the comfort of home. This was followed by further market research to identify market frictions and consumer personas.
Open Innovation Challenge
Our tried-and-tested Open Innovation Challenge model then allowed for the sourcing and selection of the most promising startups in this scope.
Three weeks of workshops, including some in-person at the Venture Lab offices in Berlin, were set up with the goal of defining specific investment and collaboration opportunities. The startups, representatives from Venture Lab Niterra Group and Hello Tomorrow, as well as external experts, dove deep into markets, economics, technologies and the overall Niterra strategy. Finally the startups pitched their fundraise and collaboration plans to top management at Niterra Group.
A further acceleration phase consisted of detailing and optimizing the complete business collaboration case, including a demo day in Silicon Valley with final workshops.
“Hello Tomorrow spent time building trust and aligning with the startups, so the in-person meetings yielded deeper insight than is typically possible.” Craig Tibbetts, VP at The Venture Lab, Niterra Group
“I found the asset analysis workshops developed by Hello Tomorrow to be valuable for discussing the strengths and opportunities of both companies, and their facilitation skills were remarkable in fostering a win-win scenario”. Mikel Mangold, Startup alliances & partnerships at The Venture Lab, Niterra Group
A key outcome of this program is that value has been created for all stakeholders. Investment discussions as well as launch of new products are being discussed with the winning companies, and the program format might be applied in other contexts across the Niterra network.
This collaboration with Niterra has demonstrated how important these types of projects are for large companies to be able to expand into new markets. The process has helped Niterra to understand the best ways to engage and collaborate with deep tech startups, as well as the underlying value that they can bring.
In that sense, access to a trusted and highly promising network of startups, as well as experienced guidance on how to successfully collaborate is key, and Hello Tomorrow are proud to offer that. The format is equally unique in its versatility, by applying to multiple industries and including frameworks and collaborations that are adjusted to guarantee concrete and actionable results.