In 2012, we were asked to help The Coca-Cola Company develop a repeatable and scalable model for “disruptive innovation.” As we reach the end of the fourth year of this journey, I thought I’d take a minute and reflect on where we are…
From the beginning, we decided to learn by doing.
“Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.”
I remember the deck I used to explain our vision and strategy with the Company’s senior executive team including our chairman, Muhtar Kent back in 2012. I summed up our approach with 3 simple words—“learn by doing.” There’s no magic in those words but we have used that approach ever since.
In the last 4 years, we’ve pivoted—actually completely redesigned—our model 3 times based on real, and sometimes painful, learnings. And while we continue to iterate our model, for the last 2 years, it’s proven to be repeatable and scalable creating the kinds of results we were hoping for.
• Through our Coca-Cola Founders platform, we’ve co-created 15 new seed-stage companies across 10 countries.
• In 2.5 years, our portfolio has generated over 3x ROI for Coke (measured through increased revenue and/or reduced cost).
• Our co-creation model has enabled the founders on our platform to develop their product by testing and learning inside one of the most scaled companies in the world—and for Coke, the model has enabled the company to leverage new business models and technologies including SaaS, predictive analytics, machine learning, and 2-sided platforms.
• Thanks to our relationship with Startup Grind and others, The Coca-Cola Company now has access to over 400k entrepreneurs and venture capitalists around the world.
• While our focus has been on creating business results, the platform has created shared value for the communities we operate in. For example, Wonolo has created over 85k new jobs creating more economic and social value in California.