At least one multinational is watching out for the little guy. More than 200 Unilever marketers from around the world are sharing their expertise and experience with innovative technology startups. The Unilever Foundry was launched in May with marketers from around the world joining the platform to start mentoring entrepreneurs in their local cities.
“As the second largest advertiser in the world we’re always looking to pioneer new ways of connecting with the people we serve," explained Marc Mathieu, SVP-marketing. "The Unilever Foundry mentorship program allows us to support and cultivate new businesses that might grow into being Unilever’s long-term strategic partners.”
During the past 18 months, Unilever has been piloting the mentorship program through start-up accelerators around the world. In the UK, Unilever has partnered with Collider, a B2Brand accelerator. Through this partnership, Unilever Mentors working with Collider’s marketing and advertising tech startups to help them develop their propositions and secure pilots. Both parties are seeing the benefits: Unilever gets access to the latest marketing technology and exposes its team to new ways of working whilst to date, five Collider startups have signed revenue-generating deals with Unilever brands.
The Unilever Foundry provides a single entry-point for innovative start-ups seeking to partner with Unilever, enabling the company’s global brands to experiment with and pilot new technologies more efficiently, effectively and speedily. It provides start-ups and entrepreneurs the opportunity to develop and work on global projects, access mentoring from marketing professionals, and tap into funding through Unilever Ventures. Start-ups are invited to find a mentor through visiting foundry.unilever.com/mentors. Simply select a mentor based on their skills and geography, then message that marketer to request their mentorship.
Collider (is an accelerator dedicated to startups which help brands understand, engage with and sell to customers. By mobilizing cash, coaches, and an intensive program, Collider supports startups in becoming sustainable businesses.