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Unilever collaborates with Cannes to champion new start-ups globally

The partnership has launched ‘Foundry 50 at Cannes’, a global search for the world’s top 50 marketing technology start-ups. The final Foundry 50 will be revealed on May 25

BestMediaInfo Bureau | Delhi | March 31, 2015

logo-foundry50Unilever Foundry, Unilever’s single entry point for start-ups to collaborate and innovate with Unilever brands globally, is partnering with Lions Innovation to launch ‘Foundry 50 at Cannes’, a global search for the world’s top 50 marketing technology start-ups.

The Foundry 50 will be chosen by a panel of experts, including Brent Hoberman, serial entrepreneur and Co-founder of Founders Forum; Rose Lewis, Co-founder of start-up accelerator Collider; Rob Dembitz, Head of Lions Innovation; Caitlin Ryan, Group Executive Creative Director, Karmarama; Olivier Garel, Head of Unilever Ventures; and Marc Mathieu, Senior VP - Global Marketing, Unilever.

Each winning start-up will receive a ticket, including accommodation, to the inaugural Lions Innovation – a new two-day event that brings together the worlds of data, technology and ideas during the 62nd annual Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.

At the event, to be held on June 25-26, start-ups will have the opportunity to speed-date with industry leaders, pitch on the Unilever demo platform and introductions to organisations attending Cannes Lions Innovation.

“Start-ups are pioneering the future of marketing. As an industry, we have an opportunity and a responsibility to support, scale and invest behind these innovators,” said Unilever’s Marc Mathieu. “Through working collectively with start-ups, we can supercharge the transformation of our industry, and that’s good for consumers, for brands and for entrepreneurs. By partnering with Lions Innovation, a fellow leader in fostering innovation in the creative space, we’re raising the profile of these start-ups amongst industry leaders with the ambition of catalysing new partnerships.”

Philip Thomas, CEO, Cannes Lions, remarked, “Lions Innovation is the bridge between start-ups, marketers and the creative community that our industry has been looking for. The Festival was created because of the incredible alchemy that happens when innovative tech is partnered with the right brand and the right idea, and Foundry 50 is dedicated to kick-starting those kinds of relationships – ones that we believe will be instrumental to the future of the industry.”

To be chosen for the Global Top 50, start-ups need to meet the following criteria:

  • Be innovative and truly disruptive, clearly differentiated from competitors already in the market
  • Be relevant and interesting to the brand & marketing industry
  • Incorporation within the last 5 years
  • Raised less than $10 million in equity funding

Starting March 31 till April 30, start-ups can apply at The final Foundry 50 will be revealed on Monday, May 25.

Unilever Foundry provides a single entry point for start-ups and scale-ups to connect with its 400 brands and champions their role in the industry. Its Pitch-Pilot-Partner approach cuts down the time it takes to get a new initiative to market, with the average project going from brief to pilot in nine months.

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