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UKINNOVATION UK119 ยป One of the other important aspects - and one of the reasons we call ourselves the London Innovation Centre - is that we are able to leverage the resources that are available from enterprises ranging from big universities to small companies. For example, we rely on detecting the earliest trends with information that comes from sources like the London College of Fashion and the Trend Institute. These aspects of LINC's work play a major role within P& G in driving innovation growth. Another important thing to add is that the diversity of the group helps us define innovation very broadly so that it goes beyond just technical innovation . Anything that's new is very much embraced to drive the business forward. 6. What types of people and business would you like to be approached by? The whole idea behind the way we approach innovation is the belief that a lot of breakthrough innovations come from non- obvious connections. Clearly, we are interested in everything from skin applications to packaging and we are open to a diversity of innovation resources. For example, a lot of the inspiration on the aluminium use that you see on our fragrance packaging came from the motor industry. Meanwhile, a lot of our work on skin imaging came from the medical industry. So we are really open for business to a multitude of applications. And we don't care where ideas come from - if they can be applied to our business, we are very happy to work with them and develop them. 7. Can you give an example of a successful innovation that has come out of the LINC? We have had many major successes. For example, we have redefined how we look at hair colour. Some of the work that has happened on Perfect 10 is a result of the work that has been generated at the LINC. And in the prestige products category, everything from the way we create fragrances and develop our packaging and our depth of consumer understanding came from the innova-tive approach we have at LINC. 8. How do you think the LINC can develop its role within UK innovation? We want to partner with major UK innovators, from start- ups and universities through to major indus-tries, and I think the LINC plays a major role in actually encouraging the seeding of new ideas, which encourages people to come in and work with us. We can also give a lot back to industry because when we collaborate, we also give back the solution that we find during our collaboration, which makes it a win win situation all round. For example, we are currently collaborating with the Royal Institute of Great Britain and have done a series of ' The Science Behind Smell' lectures. Our interest was in partnering with people who are experts in the field of olefaction and sensory sciences, while we also gave something back in giving the Royal Institute some scientific background on what the sense of smell is all about. 9. Why should an external partner be interested in working with P& G and the LINC, and what are the benefits? We want to see a major part of our collaboration efforts achieved through effective partnering. It's very much part of our mission and very much part of our corporate vision. And we genuinely want to make these collabora-tions a win- win situation - we want that first deal to be attractive to the other party so they come back for the second and third deal. Our ethos is to put ourselves in the other party's shoes and make sure it works for both parties - it has to work for both parties to be sustain-able. And ideas don't have to come from one of our particular fields either - we have already mentioned that our skincare department uses innovations developed in the automotive industry. There is a whole variety of fields and connections that we are open to. The scale of our company often means that if someone comes to us with a good idea and if it is successful within our product range, the other party has a big market of opportunity because of our global reach. So, we are on the lookout for win- win collaborations with anyone who is looking to work with the LINC and are aiming for strong, sustained partnerships. If you are interested in working with the LINC or P& G on innovation opportunities, you can go to www. pgconnectdevelop. com and click on " submit my innovation." Outline your suggestion, and tell us why and how you are interested in working with us. Open Innovation the London Innovation Centre Above: Hugo Boss Below: Olay regenerist

120INNOVATION UKINNOVATION Open Innovation UNILEVER As one of the world's largest consumer goods compa-nies, Unilever has the power to reach millions. Around 160 million times a day, someone, somewhere in the world, buys a Unilever brand. That kind of global reach makes it enormously exciting to work in innovation for Unilever. You feel that you can really make a difference because your innovations can reach so many people: it is both a wonderful opportunity and a huge responsibility. Focusing on Vitality means we strive to contribute to quality of life and wellbeing in all sorts of ways, from nutritional advances, to new toothbrush technology, to inventing a handy, low- cost water purifier for parts of the world where clean water is scarce. There's no question that an open approach to innovation is essential. Smart collaboration between ourselves and our partners allows us to leverage a greater mix of tech-nologies, speeds up time to market and so delivers value that none of us could have achieved on our own. Unilever has been collaborating to innovate in many parts of the business for years, building our skills and expertise through a wide variety of successful partner-ships. Recently though, we have stepped up our commit-ment by making open innovation a strategic priority. Across all our business there is an unrivalled opportunity right now for partners to exploit innovative leads, espe-cially those that can cross product boundaries to deliver on our Vitality mission. As our CEO Paul Polman has said, accelerating the rate of innovation in Unilever will be about " increasingly tap-ping into open innovation, increasingly broadening the definition of the business models, increasingly creating separate structures within and outside the organisation to attract the creativity and the startup mentalities and risk environment needed to get ideas to blossom." 1 How do we do open inovation? Open innovation is first of all a mindset. We would rather work with someone who has the answer today than hold out in the hope we can eventually come up with it ourselves tomorrow. Our agreement with Cynosure to develop light- based skin- care treatments is a good exam-ple of that ( see box). It is also about skills and capabilities and Unilever has learned and developed a lot in that respect over the past several years. We have people across the business trained and ded-icated to scouting for solutions and we regularly tap into technology networks and ideas brokerage. Our own web- based ideas space is being totally revamped and upgraded for 2010. We also invest in collaborative research. Since 2000, Uni-lever has funded a world- leading research group within the Department of Chemistry at Cambridge University. The Unilever Centre of Molecular Informatics focuses on devising new methods for the understanding of molecules and their properties and novel in- silico experimentation The power of more One of the world's largest consumer goods companies, Unilever's mission is to add vitality to life. It aims to meet everyday needs for nutrition, hygiene and personal care with brands that help people feel good, look good and get more out of life. Here, Vice President of Open Innovation, Jonathan Hague, talks about how Vitality characterises the company's culture and its open approach to innovation ABOVE: Jon Hague