The search is on to find the world’s top 50 marketing technology startups to pitch to industry leaders at Lions Innovation in Cannes in June. As part of the Unilever Foundry 50, startups will have an exclusive opportunity to showcase their technology, pitch their solutions to brand and agency leaders from around the world and catalyse new partnerships. Last year, Unilever launched the Foundry 50 initiative with Lions Innovation as a way to bring entrepreneurs who are pioneering the industry to meet marketing leaders at Cannes and kick start collaborations.
In 2016, the Foundry 50 initiative is being scaled up to provide even more opportunity for startups to engage with industry during the two-day event on 21 and 22 June that brings together the worlds of data, technology and ideas during the 63nd annual Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.
Successful startups will be given access to exclusive networking opportunities, discounted accommodation in the Foundry 50 village for four nights, a free delegate pass to Lions Innovation conference and the opportunity to showcase their technology in an interactive space on the show floor.
“The Unilever Foundry has a knack of identifying and supporting the most innovative startups in the world. Being selected as part of the Foundry 50 gave us validation in the eyes of the industry that is unparalleled. We had access to people and opportunities that would not have been possible alone. The introduction made at Lions Innovation through the Foundry 50 have lead to investments from the markets we are trying to conquer!” said Edward Pearse Wheatlely, co-founder of Seenit and 2015 Foundry 50 finalist
“We are delighted to be partnering with Lions Innovation for a second year to help raise the profile of startups who are transforming our industry. Like Unilever Foundry, Lions Innovation believe that fostering the creativity and innovation of tech startups is instrumental to bringing the future of marketing forward. By working collectively with startups, we can supercharge the transformation of our industry, and that’s good for consumers, for brands and for entrepreneurs. Since our launch last year, 80 percent of the Foundry 50 are now working with us and other global brands, so the success of this programme is evident,” said Aline Santos, SVP Marketing at Unilever.
“Start-ups are the lifeblood of Lions Innovation and we are delighted to be welcoming back the Unilever Foundry 50 to the Festival,” said Lions Festivals CEO, Philip Thomas. “This is a unique opportunity for the most promising international crop of innovators to get their ideas in front of the brands and agencies who can really bring them to life; a process we believe is fundamental to the future of the industry.”
The Foundry 50 will be chosen by a panel of experts, including Lastminute.com co-founder Brent Hoberman, Rob Dembitz, head of Lions Innovation, Karmarama Creative Director, Jo Jenkins, Olivier Garel, head of Unilever Ventures and Aline Santos, Senior VP of Global Marketing Unilever.
To be chosen for the Global Top 50, startups 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 & Advertising industry
- Incorporation within the last 5 years
- Demonstrate innovation in one of the following 5 categories:
- Future of Retail
- Brand & Content Innovation
- Data, Insights & Personalisation
- Social Impact
- Engaging Millennials
10 startups will be selected against each of the five categories. Winning startups will take part in a four day Foundry 50 programme from 20th to 23rd June.
Startups can apply from today at https://foundry.unilever.com/events/foundry50lionsinnovation Entries will close at 23:59 GMT, Friday 11 March 2015. The final Foundry 50 will be revealed on Wednesday 13th April 2016.
Unilever Foundry is Unilever’s global platform for innovation through collaboration. It provides a single entry point for startups and scaleups to connect with its 400 brands and champions their role in the industry. Its unique Pitch-Pilot-Partner approach dramatically cuts the time it takes to get a new initiative to market, with the average project going from brief to pilot in nine months.
7 New Technologies That Could Radically Change Our Energy Consumption
Most of our focus on technological development to lessen our environmental impact has been focused on cleaner, more efficient methods of generating electricity. The cost of solar energy production, for example, is slated to fall more than 75 percent between 2010 and 2020.
This is a massive step forward, and it’s good that engineers and researchers are working for even more advancements in this area. But what about technologies that reduce the amount of energy we demand in the first place?
Though it doesn’t get as much attention in the press, we’re making tremendous progress in this area, too.
New Technologies to Watch
These are some of the top emerging technologies that have the power to reduce our energy demands:
- Self-driving cars. Self-driving cars are still in development, but they’re already being hailed as potential ways to eliminate a number of problems on the road, including the epidemic of distracted driving ironically driven by other new technologies. However, even autonomous vehicle proponents often miss the tremendous energy savings that self-driving cars could have on the world. With a fleet of autonomous vehicles at our beck and call, consumers will spend less time driving themselves and more time carpooling, dramatically reducing overall fuel consumption once it’s fully adopted.
- Magnetocaloric tech. The magnetocaloric effect isn’t exactly new—it was actually discovered in 1881—but it’s only recently being studied and applied to commercial appliances. Essentially, this technology relies on changing magnetic fields to produce a cooling effect, which could be used in refrigerators and air conditioners to significantly reduce the amount of electricity required.
- New types of insulation. Insulation is the best asset we have to keep our homes thermoregulated; they keep cold or warm air in (depending on the season) and keep warm or cold air out (again, depending on the season). New insulation technology has the power to improve this efficiency many times over, decreasing our need for heating and cooling entirely. For example, some new automated sealing technologies can seal gaps between 0.5 inches wide and the width of a human hair.
- Better lights. Fluorescent bulbs were a dramatic improvement over incandescent bulbs, and LEDs were a dramatic improvement over fluorescent bulbs—but the improvements may not end there. Scientists are currently researching even better types of light bulbs, and more efficient applications of LEDs while they’re at it.
- Better heat pumps. Heat pumps are built to transfer heat from one location to another, and can be used to efficiently manage temperatures—keeping homes warm while requiring less energy expenditure. For example, some heat pumps are built for residential heating and cooling, while others are being used to make more efficient appliances, like dryers.
- The internet of things. The internet of things and “smart” devices is another development that can significantly reduce our energy demands. For example, “smart” windows may be able to respond dynamically to changing light conditions to heat or cool the house more efficiently, and “smart” refrigerators may be able to respond dynamically to new conditions. There are several reasons for this improvement. First, smart devices automate things, so it’s easier to control your energy consumption. Second, they track your consumption patterns, so it’s easier to conceptualize your impact. Third, they’re often designed with efficiency in mind from the beginning, reducing energy demands, even without the high-tech interfaces.
- Machine learning. Machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI) technologies have the power to improve almost every other item on this list. By studying consumer patterns and recommending new strategies, or automatically controlling certain features, machine learning algorithms have the power to fundamentally change how we use energy in our homes and businesses.
Making the Investment
All technologies need time, money, and consumer acceptance to be developed. Fortunately, a growing number of consumers are becoming enthusiastic about finding new ways to reduce their energy consumption and overall environmental impact. As long as we keep making the investment, our tools to create cleaner energy and demand less energy in the first place should have a massive positive effect on our environment—and even our daily lives.
Responsible Energy Investments Could Solve Retirement Funding Crisis
Retiring baby-boomers are facing a retirement cliff, at the same time as mother nature unleashes her fury with devastating storms tied to the impact of global warming. There could be a unique solution to the challenges associated with climate change – investments in clean energy from retirement funds.
Financial savings play a very important role in everyone’s life and one must start planning for it as soon as possible. It’s shocking how quickly seniors can burn through their nest egg – leaving many wondering, “How long your retirement savings will last?”
Let’s take a closer look at how seniors can take baby steps on the path to retiring with dignity, while helping to clean up our environment.
Tip #1: Focus & Determination
Like in other work, it is very important to focus and be determined. If retirement is around the corner, then make sure to start putting some money away for retirement. No one can ever achieve anything without dedication and focus – whether it’s saving the planet, or saving for retirement.
Tip #2: Minimize Spending
One of the most important things that you need to do is to minimize your expenditures. Reducing consumption is good for the planet too!
Tip #3: Visualize Your Goal
You can achieve more if you have a clearly defined goal in life. This about how your money can be used to better the planet – imagine cleaner air, water and a healthier environment to leave to your grandchildren.
Investing in Clean Energy
One of the hottest and most popular industries for investment today is the energy market – the trading of energy commodities. Clean energy commodities are traded alongside dirty energy supplies. You might be surprised to learn that clean energy is becoming much more competitive.
With green biz becoming more popular, it is quickly becoming a powerful tool for diversified retirement investing.
The Future of Green Biz
As far as the future is concerned, energy businesses are going to continue getting bigger and better. There are many leading energy companies in the market that already have very high stock prices, yet people are continuing to investing in them.
Green initiatives are impacting every industry. Go Green campaigns are a PR staple of every modern brand. For the energy-sector in the US, solar energy investments are considered to be the most accessible form of clean energy investment. Though investing in any energy business comes with some risks, the demand for energy isn’t going anywhere.
In conclusion, if you want to start saving for your retirement, then clean energy stocks and commodity trading are some of the best options for wallets and the planet. Investing in clean energy products, like solar power, is a more long-term investment. It’s quite stable and comes with a significant profit margin. And it’s amazing for the planet!