Strategic Investment Seminar

Opportunity Assessment wheel The Strategic Investment Seminar (SIS) is a hands-on workshop which introduces relevant internal stakeholders to the principles of Corporate Venture Capital (CVC) and familiarizes them with how companies are using strategic investment programs to foster innovation, advance strategic priorities and acquire competitive advantage-conferring capabilities.

The seminar consists of two parts:

  1. A presentation and discussion centering on CVC and the unique issues around partnering with early-stage companies and their investors
  2. Breakout sessions in which participants discuss and propose specific areas for potential partnership with external innovators

Some of the topics covered include:

  • What is Corporate Venture Capital (CVC)? How does it differ from financial (non-strategic) venture capital, and from other outward-facing technology-acquisition initiatives?
  • How can CVC be used as a cost-effective way to acquire new, competitive advantage-conferring capabilities?
  • What is strategic value? How can the company ensure focus on things which are truly valuable and avoid wasting time and energy on those which are merely intriguing?
  • How does a CVC function interact with other critical operating functions such as R&D, product development, business development, M&A and joint-venturing?
  • What are the critical components and best practices of CVC?
  • What can we do to understand the risks and benefits prior to making a long-term commitment? How do we strike the right balance between the two?

What Kinds of Companies Would Benefit from the SIS?

The SIS is designed for firms which:

  • Are seeking more cost-effective ways to maintain technology leadership in quickly-changing markets
  • Recognize that there is significant development being done in the innovation ecosystem but aren’t sure how to leverage it
  • See their competitors and partners successfully interacting with entrepreneurial firms and are concerned that they’re being leapfrogged
  • Have made occasional venture capital investments ad hoc but do not have a formal program
  • Want to gauge the capacity of line managers to successfully engage with entrepreneurial firms
  • Have had an unsuccessful program in the past and would like to consider a fresh approach to the market

Who Should Attend?

The SIS is valuable exposure for corporate executives who have a hand in making investments to develop new products and capabilities. Participants can range from researchers and product developers up to and including C-Level executives who wish to understand how they can dramatically improve their competitive standing by leveraging external innovation. Examples of functional roles for inclusion in a SIS are: Innovation, R&D, Product Development, Engineering, Product Management, Strategy, Business Development, and M&A.

What Should We Expect for an Outcome?

Attendees of the SIS should walk away with solid understanding of how to successfully interact with the innovation ecosystem to acquire new capabilities, the do’s and don’ts of partnering with early-stage firms and their investors, how they can benefit in their role by embracing the CVC process, and how to leverage their skills and capabilities to attract external innovators.

Is there a deliverable?

Yes. Each SIS includes a full report on the technology and/or market areas which have been identified by internal managers

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