Brussels, 18 December 2017. KPN has received one of the three “Corporate Startup Investment Awards” for its start-up investment activities with KPN Ventures. In addition, KPN was again recognized as “European Corporate Startup Star” for its active and successful collaboration with startups.
Innovation foundation NESTA and innovation consultancy Mind the Bridge today announced the list of companies that are most committed to fostering collaboration with startups in Europe and only 12 companies in Europe have been recognized as Corporate Startup Star. The awards are part of the European Commission’s Startup Europe Partnership initiative.
Alberto Onetti, Startup Europe Partnership coordinator and jury member: “Open innovation is a must today for all established corporates either large and SMEs. However, it is hard to get it right. We believe that the organizations doing this well should be recognized as trailblazers, and hope that they inspire others to follow suit.”
Jan Kees de Jager, KPN’s CFO sees the award as recognition of the efforts that KPN is making to help further develop the start-up ecosystem in the Netherlands: “We believe in open innovation and collaboration with start-ups as a means to develop innovative services for customers faster. We work together with start-ups on many fronts and we regard these activities as an important investment in the future. After all, the innovations of today form the basis for relevant services of tomorrow.”
Since 2015, KPN has been making an extra effort to facilitate outside-in innovation and actively pursue cooperation with start-ups and other stakeholders in the start-up ecosystem. In fostering collaboration with startups, KPN takes an integrated approach of facilitating contacts and knowledge exchange, joint product develop, commercial and strategic cooperation and financial investments.
With KPN New Business, KPN researches and develops innovative products and services for future growth together with start-ups. With KPN Ventures, the participation branch of KPN, KPN invests in European technology companies at an early stage. Both departments work closely together to organize innovative events and partnerships that connect start-ups, companies, universities and the government with each other. In particular, KPN is looking for collaborations and investments in the areas of Internet of Things, smart home, digital healthcare, cloud services, data analytics and cyber security.
According to the jury’s report, these KPN activities in the Netherlands deserve a special mention because the company has ensured “that innovation is ingrained in all corps’ functions.”