Lanzadera, Juan Roig’s factory, will be in its sixth year of life in 2019. The accelerator of startups of the president of Mercadona has supported up to now 280 business projects to which it has helped to attract 30 million in external financing, according to its own data. Many have gone ahead and others have failed or reinvented themselves. In what is the usual trend in the Spanish entrepreneurial ecosystem, the facilities of the Royal Navy of Valencia have not left until now any ‘unicorn’, no company with billionaire billings. But the factory has served as a school for entrepreneurs and ‘startups’ of all kinds of sectors that have managed to consolidate in the open sea as ‘cockroaches’, which is like in the jargon are known new initiatives of small or medium size that manage to resist and go opening hollow without too much noise. Geoblink, Panapop or Vivood are examples.
The management team of Lanzadera, commanded by Javier Jiménez, has been expanding the range of entrepreneurship programs. In addition to the classic program, it has added one for projects in the very early phase (Garage) and another (Campus) connected with EDEM, the business school of the Valencian Business Association, with which it shares facilities. But, in addition, it has consolidated its commitment to the Corporate program, an initiative with which it aims to mature as a provider of external innovation for large multinationals taking advantage of the ‘know how’ acquired as a coach and mentor of projects and entrepreneurs, with their successes and mistakes that he has tried to polish since his first exercise in operation.
“We are learning. Each ‘corporate’ is different and we try to adapt. We try to advise on how you have to work with the entrepreneur because they may not be used to it. We usually divide the interviews into two parts, one in which the person is valued, their abilities, values or effort; and another in which the multinational decides if it fits in with the company’s innovation lines, “explains Ana Giménez, responsible for Marketing and Product of Lanzadera, in conversation with El Confidencial.
The banks have their own acceleration programs, but the ‘fintech’ is something we would like to get into, also in health or tourism
To date, Lanzadera has signed agreements with five multinationals: Playstation, BSH (Bosch), CBRE, Volkswagen and Purina. The accelerator has ongoing negotiations with other companies to find collaboration formulas in which the financing is normally shared between the two mentors, either in the form of direct injection or in the provision of services and resources to the selected entrepreneurs. Health, tourism or banking are potential areas of agreement. Although Lanzadera has launched, for example, support for the startup ‘Afterbanks’ – a white label platform for adding banking data and initiating payments instantly – it does not renounce providing solutions to any particular financial entity. “The banks have their own acceleration programs, but the ‘fintech’ is something we would like to get into. We are doing things and it is one of the collaborations that we would like to have for 2019, also in tourism or health, “says Giménez. “We work to understand where Lanzadera can contribute value, in which sector we can feel more comfortable and at the same time promote projects in the Valencian Community”.
These are the projects that have been launched so far with the Corporate program:
It was the first multinational company that approached Lanzadera in search of a ‘partner’ in Valencia, where it did not have headquarters in its program to attract video game developers. It is a field in which Lanzadera already had experience with firms such as Codigames. From the joint experience was born the relationship with Chibig, a small studio that has developed the game ‘Deiland’ for the PS4 platform. After finishing the challenge, Chibig joined the ‘Garage’ program, where he is trying to mature as a studio, with another video game, ‘Summer in Mara’, also compatible with other platforms.
The accelerator maintains the classic program of ‘startups’, the Garage and the Campus. It has already supported more than 280 projects
Before Chibig, the Wild Sphere studio also developed the video game ‘Timothy vs. Sony for PS. the Alien ‘. Subsequently, he has continued to work for the company as a ‘partnership’ and has collaborated in the launch of the video game ‘Tu cara me suena’ by the Playstation.
“This is something that has happened to us. We thought that we were looking for entrepreneurs to overcome a specific challenge and then the ‘corporate’ discovers teams with which they can work on other long-term projects “, says Ana Giménez.
The real estate consultant has its own ‘proptech challenge’, a competition in technology and innovation in search of solutions for the real estate sector. But from the relationship with Lanzadera, two projects based in Valencia have emerged. Viviendea is a digital platform that aims to outperform traditional housing seekers, offering even the possibility of putting promoters and potential buyers in contact.
The second project is the development of a tertiary soil portal, a pioneering initiative in Spain that develops Industrial Governance, the company of reindustrialization consultant Carlos González Triviño.
- Who will the portal be?
-It is discussed a lot in the legal bases. Each ‘corporate’ is different. Some negotiate exclusivity every three years, like Playstation. With CBRE, it is owned by the entrepreneur.
The relationship with the German manufacturer of household appliances is described as very positive by those responsible for Lanzadera. BSH has an Innovation Institute in Zaragoza, with a well-structured team. He proposed two challenges to Lanzadera, a very specific one based on the search of a robot that speeds up the process of installing induction plates and another open one. The first was deserted. “We do not succeed in defining the challenge. Many engineers came to sell us robots that did not fit with what we are doing here. BSH has not yet managed to solve the problem and we did not want to force it. ”
The open challenge in food technology has been the most successful to date. BSH has selected an entrepreneur, Roc Viñas, who has proposed developing a juicer to “bring the technology of haute cuisine to the home”. The project is called Citring and its development has served to refine the relationship between Lanzadera and BSH. “The validation part with the client, solution proposal, ‘focus group’ works with us … With BSH, the agreement allows you to go to Zaragoza and do all the technology and concept tests at the BSH research institute”.
Juan Roig intervenes during the inauguration of the XXI National Congress of Family Business. (EFE)
-If the product goes ahead, who will have the patent?
- Germany makes the decision. It is his philosophy. The idea is to bring Citring when they consider you are ready to take it. If Bosch decides not to, the project remains the intellectual property of the entrepreneur and he will be free to offer it to other brands or to manufacture it as a company. If they like it, they’ll keep it. Other brands have come closer. Let’s go for everything to stay with BSH.
Two other teams emerged from the program with BSH, one in the Basque Country and another in Zaragoza, which did not enter into the challenges, but which have continued to collaborate with the multinational appliance company.
The agreement with the German automobile giant is in its initial phase. Two projects have been selected, which will now have to be developed. It is Flit2go, a ‘carsharing’ service platform, and Bubocar, a tool that digitizes all processes of the automotive workshop and simplifies the relationship with customers.
“Here we accelerate together. Volkswagen puts financing according to the needs of the entrepreneur and is integrated into our program “, explains the Lanzadera directive.
This ‘corporate’ is in the phase of project selection. The initiative is open to entrepreneurs from all over Spain and seeks to give impetus to innovative projects aimed at improving the lives of pets and the people who care for them. “This program will select people or teams that are capable of putting their ideas into action, regardless of the phase in which the project is located. It does not matter as much the state of maturity of the candidacy as the proposals are innovative, imaginative and feasible. When ideas are selected, they will access an 11-month program in which Nestlé Purina will provide access to their mentors and professionals, training in the product area, access to corporate and distribution centers, as well as the possibility of accessing a stock exchange. economic to promote the final service that has been developed, after an evaluation of Purina, which reserves the right to be the first customer “.
“Lanzadera will provide training in the Total Quality Management Model, business plan and agile methodologies, facilities in the Marina of companies, advice and access to events and presentations”, explain from the Valencia accelerator.
Also published on Medium.