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How to Raise New Technological Leaders? An Effective Model of Interaction Between Corporates and Start-Ups
8 June 2019
12:00—13:15
KEY CONCLUSIONS
Start-ups in Russia develop well in conjunction with big business

We see a lot of progress, over 10 thousand people working in Skolkovo. And these are not just start-ups, nearly 400 people represent private companies, large and state corporations — Pekka Viljakainen, Advisor to the President, Skolkovo Foundation; Chairman, Aii Capital.

Three years we have funneled over 700 start-ups in different stages. We have implemented over 35 different products through internal innovations. <…> When we promote an initiative, whether internal or external, though a decision-making funnel we are going the right way — Alexander Aivazov, Vice President for Business Development, Rostelecom.

We launched a business technology sandbox. When working with a large corporation, a start-up can do with 300-400 thousand roubles for a short pilot. <…> This allowed us to go through 800 ideas. Unlike a venture fund, we do not pick 20 ideas and bet on them, but rather go for a wide net — Aleksandr Sobolev, Director, Strategic and Organizational Development, MegaFon.

Foreign investors are interested in Russian technologies

German business is deeply intertwined with the Russian market, last year alone has shown record-breaking investments into Russian economy. <…> Picking start-ups in Russia is easy: there is crazy potential, so many interesting ideas and companies — Matthias Schepp, Chairman of the Russian-German Chamber of Commerce.

ISSUES
Russian corporate management is inert and unwilling to take risks

Any corporation is immune to risks. <…> Until there is a risk-tolerance, until internal decision-making turns into an overarching system of working with start-ups and piloting, [there will be no development of start-ups] — Alexander Aivazov, Vice President for Business Development, Rostelecom.

The main element here is culture, innovation perception within a company. That is a real challenge. How can companies that do not have clear technological process build risk-taking possibilities? — Andrey Laptev, Director for Business Development and Corporate Venture Projects, Severstal Management.

Corporations do not have people who know how to grow companies, <…> how to turn a company from scratch into a significant player — Alexander Galitsky, Co-Founder, Managing Partner, Almaz Capital .

Our major companies, our national champions differ from those implementing innovations outside of Russia first of all in terms of decision-making speed — Dmitry Butrin, Deputy Editor-in-Chief, Head of Economic Policy Section, Kommersant Publishing House .

The main issue is working with outside start-ups. <…> Why is it so difficult? It is not timely. <…> Apart from start-ups, interaction also requires professional mediators like the venture funds — Arkady Trachuk, General Director, Goznak.

Start-ups do not fit in with corporate standards

Start-ups are often fixed on their innovation and do not notice the customer — Aleksandr Sobolev, Director, Strategic and Organizational Development, MegaFon.

Start-ups are undereducated. They do not notice business in general — Aleksei Romanenko, Partner, Head of Management Consulting, Head of Infrastructure and Transport, KPMG in Russia and the CIS.

Procurement procedures are initially made for major players, for large integrator companies. <…> Many start-ups simply do not fit the requirements — Artem Avetisyan, Director of the New Business Department, Agency for Strategic Initiatives; Chairman, Leaders’ Club for the Promotion of Business Initiatives Non-Profit Partnership..

Russian business is not ready for international cooperation

While China forces their funds to go invest and look for technologies abroad, out state corporations are fearful. It is an illusion that you can make everything within one country, not one country can do that — Eugeny Kuznetsov, Chief Executive Officer, Orbita Capital Partners .

You cannot sit in an abstract lab and shy away from the rest of the world. Unfortunately, technologies are very dependent on other countries — Vitaly Ponomarev, Chief Executive Officer, WayRay.

SOLUTIONS
Developing a risk-taking culture

There should be teams, both within and outside the companies, that are ready to take risks — Pekka Viljakainen, Advisor to the President, Skolkovo Foundation; Chairman, Aii Capital.

Companies need to have this business process, this appetite for risk, that allows them to make decisions and manage investments — Vasily Nomokonov, CEO, SIBUR.

Simplifying the legislature that regulates interaction with startups

We need an efficient system for this, primarily in terms of a reasonable window for risk, elimination of excessive bureaucracy — Eugeny Kuznetsov, Chief Executive Officer, Orbita Capital Partners .

Second big idea is radical simplification. When working with a start-up, you need to have an opportunity to sign a contract within a week and complete a pilot in three. We did that and created a fast-track system — Aleksandr Sobolev, Director, Strategic and Organizational Development, MegaFon.

Separating primary processes and innovation work within a company

We came up with a business process where we bring our internal startuper and industrialist together in just one strategic session. <…> Our experience shows that large corporations can integrate with startups if a corporation has a process in place where the corporation acts like a fund — Vadim Shvetsov, Director General, PJSC Sollers.

We split the company in two streams: current activity and development centre, the latter full of people who can focus on experimentation — Andrey Laptev, Director for Business Development and Corporate Venture Projects, Severstal Management.

The material was prepared by the Russian news agency TASS