Diageo launches new venture to partner with leading tech start-ups around the world

Diageo plc, the parent company of Guinness Ghana Breweries Limited (GGBL) has created a new global innovation programme – Diageo Technology Ventures – designed to solve existing business challenges and unlock new opportunities for growth by working with emerging technology companies and entrepreneurs.

Through the programme, Diageo will partner with companies across the globe to rapidly develop and pilot technology solutions in response to a series of focussed business briefs. Successful applicants will work with some of Diageo’s leading talent to develop their solution and a US$100,000 fund will be committed by Diageo to support each pilot project.

Syl Saller, Chief Marketing Officer, Diageo said: “Tech start-ups and entrepreneurs are truly defining disruptive innovation, driven by an irrepressible appetite to experiment and a willingness to take risks. Diageo Technology Ventures allows us to access this world as we look to solve some of our biggest business challenges.

“This programme will also further build our internal ability to move with pace and provoke a genuine entrepreneurial mind-set in our pursuit of breakthrough innovation. It underlines our fundamental belief that through partnerships with forward-thinking start-ups and entrepreneurs we will deliver competitive advantage for our business.”

Preba Greenstreet, Corporate Relations Director, GGBL said, “The Diageo Technology Ventures will allow us to gain early access to the latest technologies and business models to differentiate Diageo’s products, marketing and operations and we are confident this global initiative will unearth new ideas and bring fresh thinking to existing business challenges. We believe there are a number of innovative Ghanaians entrepreneurs who can compete with other entrepreneurs globally and we urge them to take advantage of the unique opportunity”.

Cementing Diageo’s ongoing commitment to tackling irresponsible drinking, she said a brief which seeks out technologies and platforms that can be used to help consumers to drink responsibly will be launched. The brief will challenge applicants to tap into existing digital behaviours or utilise platforms already widely used by young adults above the legal purchase age.

The second brief developed for launch will look for solutions to support retailers and distributors in countering retail theft.

Diageo plans to issue a number of briefs during the first year of the programme and will fund multiple pilots per brief. All funding decisions will be made by a steering group of senior leaders including Syl Saller, Chief Marketing Officer.

Applicants are invited to apply via the diageo.com website http://www.diageo.com/en-row/ourbusiness/diageo-technology-ventures/Pages/default.aspx . Decisions on who will be invited into the scheme will take place by December.

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