BMW Group UK has launched the BMW Innovation Lab 2018 to support automotive entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs.
The new program, which builds upon the success of the inaugural Lab in 2016 seeing four out of five incubated startups (Cazana.com, Wrisk, Divido, Drover) succeed in building ongoing relationships with the company’s UK commercial operations, will add a new intrapreneur program to inspire, shape and realize innovative ideas from the 1,300-strong workforce operating across the BMW Group’s three commercial divisions in the UK – BMW (UK) Ltd, BMW Group Financial Services (GB) Ltd, and business mobility solutions provider, Alphabet (GB) Ltd.
The intrapreneur program will help staff contribute ideas to help deliver new and improved services to customers.
The BMW Innovation Lab entrepreneur program provides an opportunity for early-stage startups to partner with BMW Group’s UK commercial divisions. The Lab is aimed at companies with disruptive business models or new technologies that could benefit BMW customers. Businesses can enter any of four categories:
– Seamless Customer Experience – how startup technology can add value to both the online and in-person retail process.
– Enhancing Business Processes – automating existing operations.
– Access versus Ownership – exploring new business models to give existing and new target customer groups greater access to mobility solutions.
– RegTech Wildcard – new solutions focused around the affordability, compliance and regulatory environments.
Run in partnership with L Marks, a corporate innovation specialist and investment fund, the entrepreneur program will see successful startups selected to join a structured 10-week course of activities. Participants will have access to mentorship from the BMW Group’s UK leadership team, a collaborative working environment at the company’s UK HQ in Farnborough, access to vehicles and other resources, a business education program with links to a network of industry experts, and access to investors and fundraising support from L Marks.
Working with TIL Ventures, a specialist at building a culture of corporate innovation, the intrapreneur program provides a series of workshops and residential courses, at which initial ideas are developed with the help of academics, business mentors and BMW’s own leadership team. Eight successful teams will then be selected to embark on a 12-week structured mentoring program to complete a comprehensive business plan describing how to turn their idea into commercial reality.
Applications from external entrepreneurs, startups and early stage growth businesses to participate in the BMW Innovation Lab 2018 must be submitted through the website www.bmwinnovationlab.co.uk by 16 October 2017.