December 12, 2018
A core value proposition for the Chrysalix RoboValley Fund is access to our unique innovation ecosystem. Recently, we had the pleasure of seeing this come to life at our inaugural Collision Day in the Netherlands. With the help of our academic partner, RoboValley and the Technical University of Delft, we brought together our community of start-ups, Limited Partners and academic researchers for a day of discovery and learning. The overwhelming feedback was how valuable it was to meet face-to-face and to learn from individuals across the ecosystem. We believe this model allows us to unlock three fundamental innovation challenges.
Challenge 1: Start-ups – solving problems that matter:
From our experience, we often see start-ups with interesting technologies and well-intended founders who do not have a clear understanding of their customer needs because of the amount of time spent in design before speaking to a customer. At Collision Day, start-ups were able to source immediate feedback from our Limited Partners on the application of their solutions and gain advice on how to further improve their offering to make it more attractive to potential customers.
Challenge 2: Limited Partners – accelerating the path to innovation:
We have heard before that large companies “do not need external innovation because (they) have strong internal R&D”. However, as Greg Satell noted in his article on Disruptive Innovation, there is “no one ‘true’ path to innovation”, in fact, different problems require different innovation strategies. At Collision Day, our Limited Partners were able to engage in all four innovation types to further accelerate problem-solving by engaging with leaders across industries and geographies.
Challenge 3: Academic Partners – making research relevant:
A recent article in the Harvard Business Review outlined the challenges of making research applicable to managers. Specifically, the authors highlighted a bi-directional problem where researchers design studies without input from practitioners and practitioners are not aware of, let alone apply the latest researched based insights. At Collision Day, leading professors from our network were able to directly engage with our Limited Partners and start-ups to answer key pressing questions and to shed light on leading research happening at their various institutions.
By bringing together all the stakeholders in our investment ecosystem, we are able to unlock innovation challenges and leverage the expertise of everyone in the room, including building relationships and collaborations that extend beyond the day. Whether you are the Executive of a global company, a distinguished professor or the founder of a high-potential start-up, we invite you to join our innovation ecosystem. At Chrysalix, we believe that open dialogue and innovative partnerships are the key to bridging the gap between theory and practice.