Disruption from startups, and the allure of the next unicorn, are driving continued support of innovative propositions. To aid innovation, BCG announced that it has partnered with Hello Tomorrow, a non-profit organisation aimed at supporting technology startups whose purpose is to solve the world’s pressing issues. The organisation runs a yearly competition, with the winning startup taking home €100,000 – applications for this year’s edition are open until June 17.
Innovation remains a key driver of disruption and new propositions in a range of sectors. One significant new development is technology, through which a wide variety of new innovations in business models, as well as products, have become possible. Investing in innovation remains a mainstay for organisations globally, with investments last year at $680 billion; although issues related to best practice in innovation, as well as innovation failure, remain. While large corporations are investing heavily, smaller players – leveraging new technologies – are creating a stir, with large amounts of money being invested in startups as well as startup incubators.
One supporter of innovative enterprises is Hello Tomorrow, founded in 2011. The non-profit, headquartered in Paris, aims to accelerate science & tech innovation by supporting startups through a global competition, held for the most promising science-technology projects and startups that aim to solve the world’s pressing issues. The competitions have so far raised $90 million for 60 early-stage startups, of which 57 are still operational.
The Boston Consulting Group will partner with Hello Tomorrow and support this year’s competition, through an assessment of current trends, as well as defining the scope of the international competition Hello Tomorrow Challenge 2016. Nicolas Harlé, a Senior Partner at BCG, says “Creating impact at our clients and in the society is BCG’s mission. This is why we are happy to engage with Hello Tomorrow. Through this global partnership, we aim to help companies evolve in an ever-changing ecosystem.”
The 2016 edition of the competition is open to startups that have raised less than €400,000, have a core piece of technology and are working on a product that can have great impact on industry and on society. The application period for qualifying startups runs between April 19 and June 17, with the grand finale to be held in Paris on the 13th and 14th of October, during the Hello Tomorrow Summit - which last year attracted 3,000 delegates from across the world. The winners take home €100,000 in funding, while finalists will be awarded €15,000.
The grand prize winner of last year’s edition, Hellow Tomorrow 2015, is Susan Grahams with Oxford-based startup Biocarbon Engineering, in the Energy & Environment category. Other prize winners per category are Balaji Sridhar with startup Nanoly Bioscience, in the Materials & Manufacturing category; Eric Beydoun with startup Wavve Stream, in the Food & Agriculture category; David Venturelli with startup Archon Dronics, in the IT & Security category; and lastly, Irina Rymshina with startup Hope, in the Healthare category.