Interim Pitch

October 27, 2021

Time is flying – we are six weeks into our innovation program ‘Transformation – Be Sustainable!’ and only have six more weeks to go until the big finale. With yesterday’s Interim Pitch, we reached the halftime of our mission and during the livestream out of the Handelsblatt Headquarter in Düsseldorf, our teams presented their refined concepts and first prototypes.

Prior to the pitches, we could welcome Dr. Stefan Wörner, Managing Partner at Bain &Company, on stage for a keynote speech on sustainable transformation. Talking about how the importance of sustainability shapes our economy and how the sustainability movement influences the future of companies, Stefan pinpointed the economic importance of sustainability, defined transformation challenges and outlined solutions towards a more sustainable future. Specifically, he sees energy and carbon, resources and circularity, mobility and cities, food and health, social and community, and finance and value as the major transition entry points for the economy on a global scale. Urging for major lifestyle and consumption changes, Stefan argues that sustainability must be reflected into the business strategy and all levers of the operating model. The rules of business are changing and with our #TheMission programs, we constantly pioneer new solutions.

During our subsequent panel discussion, Jannis Röthemeier could dive into the current sustainable transformation of three leading corporates together with Gabriele Haeßig (Managing Director Communication & Sustainability DACH at Procter & Gamble), Lavinia Ahmad (Head of Sustainability & Corporate Responsibility International and Germany at Kaufland) and Anna Frankenberg (Corporate Social Responsibility Manger at PreZero Group). Outlining their major sustainability challenges, our panelists shared their target visions and explained how to strategically and operationally drive change within their companies. As call-to-action for our audience, they emphasized collaboration as main driver for change and the ultimate premise for a successful transformation: ‘it can only happen together’ along the entire value chain of the entire industry landscape.

With ‘Transformation– Be Sustainable!’, we focus on the entire corporate world to discover, design,and build innovative solutions that contribute to the sustainable transformation. In fact, we want to redesign today’s approaches and ideate new solutions that inspire, educate, and activate the world around us for a holistic positive change – this is our teams’ vision.  

Starting with inspiration, Oriana, Selina and Paula aim to facilitate decision-making, increase employee engagement and foster a sustainable culture by providing transparent and actionable carbon reduction recommendations. Unlike current business models on the market, Sustainacy incorporates assessments, recommendation systems, cost-benefit analyses, employee engagement and external monitoring altogether for a holistic approach towards change.

Verena, Matthias and Florent, on the other hand, focus on the education of employees to create a sustainable change for companies from within. With Resolvert, they are building a gamified sustainability e-learning tool that – specified to corporates’ sustainability goals – provides fundamental sustainability knowledge to increase awareness, knowledge, and action. Through individualized trainings, adaptable content, a reward system and a sustainability databank, the team aims to knowledge about sustainability into real business life.

Julius, Donatus and Suren, lastly, envision that every new company (=startup) includes sustainability as a core value. With mavue, they are building a data-driven tool for investors and startups to begin their ESG due diligence journey with an easily accessible reporting platform that makes ESG and impact visible and accessible. The tool provides business analyses, ESG assessments and relevant KPIs to help investors screening the market, and startups featuring their impact.

What an event, but ‘after the pitch’ is also ‘before the pitch’. Diving into the second half of our program, our teams will now work on their user research, user testing and the evaluation of market entry points as well as the development of a proper prototype to put their ideas into practice. We are very much looking forward to the upcoming weeks, and cannot wait for the Final Pitch in the end of November.  

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