3 Reasons Corporates Win when Working with Startups

15.04.2018
Adir Zimerman, CEO and Co-Founder at SCREEMO
In order to keep up with evolving consumer needs and to stay relevant, corporates have to innovate. Or die. With innovation and risk-taking not being a fundamental component of a corporates ideology or methodology, they can only achieve this by building strategic relationships with partners who not only compliment and fulfill their missing parts but also strengthen and elevate their customer offering to the next level. The path to success is currently being paved by giant enterprises who know that startups are an integral part of their future. 

This article is the first in a series where I’ll cover all angles of the relationship between startups and corporates including how and why these partnerships often lead to symbiotic success. I will delve all the way down to the basics of how startups and corporates often begin their relationship - through corporate programs, accelerators and as initial customers, using my personal experience of taking my company SCREEMO, from an idea to a global startup, by using the power of 4 different corporate programs and then working and partnering with giant global corporates including Coca-Cola, Walmart, SAP, Microsoft and more. 

So let’s get started! Here are 3 reasons why corporates need to start working with startups right now:

1. Time and cost-effective
Startups and corporates bring two very different yet equally integral skills to the partnership. While startups excel at the initial creation of products and the adventure that is proof of concept; larger enterprise companies excel at successfully scaling the usage and sales of that product. As corporations move slowly and take more calculated risks, they can take advantage of the fact that the startup has been focused and already working on the technology. This allows the corporate to save the time, effort and resources required to complete this process from scratch by using the startup as a shortcut.

2. Startups run free
A recent survey conducted by Inc. of 250 executives of large and small corporations found that 40% of executives felt their industry was being disrupted by startups who were at an innovation advantage because they were able to take more risks and have greater agility. While startups are free to be creative and to work agile, corporations have internal barriers and can often be resistant to change. Corporates are slower to try new things and are more protective and fearful of their reputation when it comes to introducing new products and features so for them, finding a startup to partner with who can take on these risks can often be a considerable relief for the corporate.

3. Pivot
In order to find the right customer, value proposition, or positioning a business must pivot their strategy to test a new approach regarding their business model or product. This can often be a slow and laborious process for a corporate to achieve and while reputation and customer satisfaction is so key to corporates, most startups don’t have long-term relationships or obligations to a plethora of customers to maintain: enter the pivot. By being footloose and fancy-free, startups are able to pivot their product much to the advantage of their partner the corporate and to grow beyond the initial product and think more broadly about the customer problems they solve on behalf of the corporate.

This integral and often crucial collaboration allows the corporate to take on the startup as an additional less regulated arm, saving time and money and injecting a fresh dose of innovation into the organization. But the benefits are not just one-sided; for a startup, there are a plethora of reasons why working with a corporate can make or break their business and that’s exactly what I’ll be talking about in my next article, stay tuned!

Adir Zimerman is a multicultural entrepreneur and a keynote speaker. He is the co-founder and CEO of SCREEMO. By implementing a unique enterprise sales approach Adir grew SCREEMO into a global company operating in North America, Europe and APAC with fortune 500 companies including: Walmart, Coca-Cola, Microsoft and more.

Adir will be  giving a talk on the subject of this article on May 22 in Tel Aviv - you can sign up to attend here.