Transport for London (TfL) has been recognised at the 2021 Corporate Startup Stars Awards, receiving the Public Sector Award for Open Innovation.
The awards – hosted by innovation advisory firm Mind the Bridge and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) under the European Commission’s Startup Europe Partnership (SEP) initiative – are given to companies and organisations that have established the most successful, mutually beneficial partnerships with start-ups through procurement, licensing, accelerators, direct investment, acquisitions or other dedicated programmes.
Speaking to capitaltribunenews.com, Rikesh Shah, Head of Commercial Innovation at TfL, said: “Start-ups continue to give us all new ways of thinking to keep on doing the best for London – from finding new ways to improve air quality, to using software to measure the impact of roadworks.
“I encourage any start-ups with ideas on how to provide new solutions for the capital to look at our Innovation Challenges and get in touch to see how we can work together and help provide a better, more effective transport network.”
As part of the Mayor’s Civic Innovation Challenge, TfL launched the London FreightLab in winter 2020 – collaborating with market innovators to make freight and servicing more efficient across the city.
Rikesh Shah, Head of Commercial Innovation, TfL
FreightLab offered each innovator £20,000 (US$27,000) in seed funding, as well as access to experts, mentors, data and pilot sites across the city to develop strategies.
The callout to market was highly successful, with innovation trials currently underway in partnership with freight and utilities providers including AppyWay, EMSOL, ENSO Tyres, Fernhay Partners, Ford Mobility and Humanising Autonomy.
“Evolve or be extinct”
The 2021 awards, which took place in Paris, recognised 50 global companies and organisations for their work in open innovation, with Pfizer, AXA and Xiaomi taking first, second and third places respectively.
“’Evolve or Be extinct’ has been Mind the Bridge’s mantra since day one: startups today might be either vehicles of disruption or innovation,” said Alberto Onetti, Chairman of Mind the Bridge.
“No corporate, whatever the size and industry, is immune from disruption if they do not put open innovation at the centre of their strategy.
“The good news is that open innovation is increasingly adopted at global level and best practices are now available to help late movers to enter the arena and close the gap.
“The Corporate Startup Stars Awards are aimed at showcasing best practices and role models of how the corporate-startup collaboration might benefit both sides with the ultimate goal to help and inspire other corporates to follow suit.”
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