Ventures

Venture building is a critical part of our firm’s strategy to invest our resources in great entrepreneurs with innovative ideas:
• Design Thinking Process
• Corporate Venture Capital
• Digital Social Innovation

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DESIGN THINKING PROCESS

Our approach to venture-building is to use the mindsets and skills of human-centered design to create transformational change and impact.

From the outset, we work closely with our clients to gain deeper insights into their needs and develop stronger solutions. We develop empathy for our customers and insights for creating the products and services they want and need. Using practical design-thinking skills and mindsets, we turn their needs into human-centered solutions, providing the resources that will drive the success of start-ups.

Our Philosophy is that venture builders are the nest, start-ups are the eggs and someday the eggs will hatch into beautiful birds that fly away.

Design Thinking focuses on developing useful products and solutions that fit the needs of the End User. We develop an understanding of the challenge ahead by investigating our users’ needs. It’s imperative that we clearly articulate the problem we are trying to resolve. Team brainstorming generates ideas to design potential solutions. We apply rapid prototyping to answer questions, test solutions and sprint-cycles to engage our users for continuous feedback. This process helps us to design, implement and scale the most effective solutions for our clients.

Combining Design Thinking, Lean and Agile Methodologies

Ideas generation is the starting point for successful entrepreneurship. But, the best ideas is not necessarily the fist one that you come up with. We support our clients with the resources and infrastructure, to review and continuously refine their original ideas through the lean start-up process, to speedily launch their products onto the market using Agile methodology.

 

OUR PHILOSOPHY

DESIGN THINKING. VENTURE CAPITAL. DIGITAL INNOVATION

CORPORATE VENTURE CAPITAL

Building a culture of innovative collaboration between corporates and start-ups.

 

A perspective of risks and opportunities

Corporates do not usually have the expertise nor structural agility to pursue in-house innovation effectively, so collaboration with ambitious entrepreneurs can enable them to experiment with new ideas, at low cost and risk. For start-ups, joint working could offer the infrastructural support required to develop their products and establish a market presence quickly. Despite the potential risks in losing control of their identity and product, plus competitive pressures to succeed, the strength lies in corporate collaboration with a champion who shares their vision, has the power, resources and credibility to drive change.

Framework for successful ecosystem collaboration

There are many models for corporate collaboration with early stage, high potential businesses. Opportunities exist to form mutually beneficial partnerships, which have the potential to boost productivity and competitiveness. Co-development and Ecosystem orchestration is one of the ways that corporates can jointly work with start-ups to solve big challenges. Hackathons and Accelerator programmes provide multi-disciplinary innovation, with seed-funding, mentoring and training for start-ups.

Corporate Venture Capital works well when businesses invest their money in aspiring start-ups, with viable market propositions, to either obtain financial returns or for strategic advantage; the latter benefits from funding that facilitate access to new markets and scale-up growth.

 

TESTIMONIALS

An accomplished professional advisor with strong expertise in corporate finance and major project management. He was collaborative, decisive, and had strong consulting and strategic planning skills.
Chief Revenue Officer, Technology Co.
They bring immense knowledge, professionalism and zeal to every project collaboration and economic development initiatives in Africa.
Manager, Big4 Firm
They showed great initiative and commitment in planning and executing a highly successful project. The ability to collaborate effectively and oversee various aspects of the implementation were integral to this outcome.
Consultant, McKinsey

DIGITAL SOCIAL INNOVATION

Realise the potential of people and technology to tackle big challenges

Innovation is at the heart of what we do. A critical part of our firm’s strategy is to invest in entrepreneurs using our ideas and resources. We apply the latest technologies and methods of best practice from across the globe to support our clients to capitalise on all opportunities. Our success is driven by cutting-edge insights, data analytics and evidence. We understand that sustainable business models are intrinsically linked to digital social innovation and ongoing research into competitive strategies.

Explore social trends and technological breakthroughs set to shape the global agenda

We scan the horizon to discover emerging technologies and develop novel ideas that help to solve problems of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Our approach ensures that every engagement enables clients make sound decisions about their ambitions; to impact the planet in a positive, sustainable way.

CASE STUDY

Addressing Dysfunctional Food Systems

ABC is an innovative start-up that aims to transform the way food value chains work in Africa’s urban regions, from competitive to collaborative, giving farmers a fair price for their produce. We envisage that success will result in:
• Sustainable enterprise opportunities for local communities
• Local skills training and scalable knowledge transfer
• Food security, financial inclusion and poverty alleviation

Digitalising the Agricultural Value Chain

Our collaboration with an Agtech start-up to design a software-as-service (SaaS) product will offer access to working capital and competitive markets for Africa’s Small and Medium Enterprises. It aims to improve transparency, control and collaboration from smallholder farmers to small and medium enterprises, and consumers to increase productivity in the sector. It would drive expansion, transforming subsistence agriculture into sustainable commercial businesses.