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Successfully connecting corporates with small business

Posted: 09 Jun 2017

The benefits of collaboration between corporates and small businesses is well documented. These connections assist SMEs to fast track to new markets and get scale and the corporates to gain access to relevant new ideas and innovations.

However despite the benefits of these relationships to both parties, they are notoriously difficult to broker and cultivate.

For the last few years VitalSix has successfully managed collaborative projects with a number of corporates by connecting relevant and qualified SMEs with corporate innovation projects.

In October 2016 VitalSix introduced TrackerSense to Unipart.  Unipart appreciated the value that TrackerSense could bring to their clients and swiftly commenced a project to adopt and adapt the technology to monitor valuable assets in the supply chain of a key Unipart customer.

VitalSix have been involved with TrackerSense from its conception. TrackerSense have developed a parcel delivery and asset tracking technology for clients that need to track valuable, time or condition sensitive deliveries globally and manage high volume low value assets used in logistics. The support delivered, initially through the Government funded Growth Hub project took the form of coaching predominantly supporting development of financial forecasts and structures.  The Growth Hub awarded a grant in 2014 to assist with the development of the software and hardware and this has been followed up with light touch guidance, in an advisory capacity, from the VitalSix team who through this continued involvement have maintained a comprehensive understanding of the technology.  VitalSix identified that the TrackerSense technology would be of particular relevance to Unipart and are delighted by the outcome of this introduction for both parties.

Building on the success of this, VitalSix have strengthened this partnership by the introduction of two further companies in May 2017.

cereno have a collaborative video conferencing software, nuVa. nuVa enables engineers, architects and designers to collaborate and communicate their ideas remotely by being able to share and work on multiple documents in many formats on one interactive display.  This allows globally dispersed individuals and organisations to make decisions in a meeting format, vastly improving the speed and effectiveness of collective decision-making.

The Behaviouralist showcased its Signol software, promoting sustainability in the aviation sector by changing fuel use behaviours. They are developing and validating a prototype that will: (i) integrate and analyse revealed fuel-use data; (ii) deliver personalised and actionable behavioural solutions to captains; (iii) build in scientifically robust trial methodology; and (iv)allow any airline to monitor, measure, and maximise the impact of behavioural change on fuel savings. This behavioural change expertise is applicable across many sectors, not just where fuel consumption metrics are monitored and improvements measured.

Both propositions were well received by Unipart and the Innovation group senior management team and discussions with both are underway for paid pilots. VitalSix look forward to continuing this and other corporate relationships where they identify, qualify and introduce small business to opportunities and cash and corporates to new innovations.