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The Changing Landscape of Corporate-Startup Engagement

How are the interactions between Global 1000 companies and startups changing? How do large organizations build the case for greater involvement in the startup ecosystem? What resources do they put in place? What challenges and roadblocks do they encounter in trying to run initial pilot tests and then scale up what works? 

To answer those questions, and others, we conducted a survey in Q3 2021 whose respondents included both leaders in large organizations and entrepreneurs who are seeking to collaborate with large organizations. We also conducted interviews with entrepreneurs and corporate professionals at companies like ExxonMobil, FM Global, PACCAR, Comcast NBCUniversal, and BAE Systems. The results are collected in a 61-slide PDF available here to Innovation Leader members. (MIT Industrial Liaison Program members can also access a complimentary copy by contacting their Program Director.) We’ll also be publishing longer versions of some of the interviews here, as well as bonus content.

September 2021 • Research Sponsored By

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Why Startup-Corporate Partnerships Matter Now

Startup-corporate partnerships play an increasingly important role in the corporate innovation journey and startup evolution. Yet this topic has not been widely researched or investigated. MIT Corporate Relations, which the Industrial Liaison Program (ILP) and MIT Startup Exchange are a part of, were delighted to collaborate with Innovation Leader to better understand the challenges and best practices of startup-corporate partnerships.

This report captures some of the most interesting findings and, even more importantly, further illuminates the white spaces and raises additional questions that will guide future research into this important topic. As one example, we found that for 80 percent of our corporate respondents globally, engagement with the startup ecosystem had either increased through the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, or remained steady. 

Read the full article >>

 

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Sample Data from the Report: We asked corporate respondents about the biggest challenges they faced when engaging with the startup ecosystem. This sample data can be sorted (menu at top right) based on the respondents level of experience with startup engagement. More sortable data visualizations from this report are available to IL members in our Data & Downloadable Docs section.

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About the Report: This 61-slide research deck was produced by Innovation Leader’s editorial staff, with input from our sponsor, MIT Corporate Relations (which includes the MIT Startup Exchange and the MIT Industrial Liaison Program.) All data and interviews were conducted in Q3 2021.

Table of Contents

Overview

Why Startup-Corporate Partnerships Matter Now

Executive Summary

Corporate Insights

A ‘Fairly Experienced’ Respondent Set

How Has the Pandemic Changed Activity Levels?

How Activity Changed, by Company Location

Comments: Why Activity Increased or Decreased

Most Common Types of Startup Interaction

Comments: How Corporates Make the Case

Innovator Perspective: PACCAR

The Biggest Challenge: Getting Buy-In

What’s Driving Startup Engagement

Comments: Startup Engagement Advice

What Constitutes a ‘Quality’ Startup?

Innovator Perspective: BAE Systems

Measuring Success

Successful Outcomes

Comments: Concrete Outcomes of Engagement

Innovator Perspective: FM Global

Which Leader Supports Startup Engagement? 

Internal Resources for Startup Engagement

Innovator Perspective: Sumitomo Chemical America

Which Stage of Startup is Ideal?

Comments: What Would You Change?

Startup Insights

Challenges for Startups

Innovator Perspective: Mori

Innovator Perspective: ExxonMobil

Startup Success Factors

Comments: Determining Which Corporates to Work With

Top Pandemic Challenges, for Startups

Innovator Perspective: Comcast NBCUniversal

Benefits of Ecosystem Participation

Innovator Perspective: High Alpha

Comments: Startups Advice to Corporates

Five Key Considerations for Success

Additional Data

About the Corporate Respondents: Location

About the Corporate Respondents: Size

About the Corporate Respondents: Industry 

Investing in Startups, by Company Size

Pilot Testing Startup Tech, by Company Size

Startup Acquisitions, by Company Size

Team and Process, by Company Size

Budget and Buy-In, by Company Size 

Team and Process, by Geography

Budget and Buy-In, by Geography

Corporate Venture Capital, by Geography

About the Startup Respondents

About MIT Corporate Relations

About Innovation Leader

 

Join Innovation Leader today to get unlimited access to this and 25 other research reports. Additional member benefits include: access to articles, case studies, downloadable tools and templates, live and on-demand webcasts, special member rate on conferences and events, and much more!

If you register for a free Innovation Leader trial account below, you can instantly access an excerpt from this report.

If you are already a member, you can sign in.