PepsiCo, one of the biggest global companies committed to drive innovation and support talents, is expanding its program PepsiCo10, launched last summer in the U.S., to Europe. The initiative is aimed at discovering emerging and innovative small media and technology companies, which can introduce small, but very positive changes to the industry working side by side with PepsiCo experts developing projects for the Pepsi-Cola, Walkers Snacks, Tropicana and Quaker brands.
“We had a fantastic response to the inaugural PepsiCo10 last year [in the U.S.], with more than 400 innovative entries and we are excited to be rolling out the initiative across Europe,” said Bonin Bough, PepsiCo’s Global Director of Digital and Social Media, who was recently featured in the list of Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business in 2011. According to the program’s official website, PepsiCo is “looking for companies and start-ups with a ‘ready-to-go’ product or service technology” in the following fields: Social Media and/or Community-based Marketing; Mobile Marketing: On the Phone, Tablets and Beyond; Place-based Technology; Digital Video; and Gaming or Learning.
The new ten start-ups from all across Europe will be announced on September 19, and the new projects will be launched starting October (according to the program’s FAQ, the pilot ones will be undertaken with PepsiCo brands in the UK). The entries can be submitted through July 15, then, on August 15, the judging panel will select 40 finalists who will be asked to submit a video pitch presentation until September 2. The winners will be awarded with £10,000 for the full development of their company and will have an opportunity to collaborate with the experts from PepsiCo—the young talents will create new solutions for the above-mentioned PepsiCo’s brands, “whilst receiving support and guidance from industry-leading mentors.”
PepsiCo will not restrict the winning tech entrepreneurs from working with other companies—on the contrary, it says that it will provide the start-ups with “access to major European media titles, who may wish to maintain their relationships independent of their pilot program with PepsiCo.” Last year’s 10 winners, including the BreakOut Band platform for aspiring musicians, which partnered with Pepsi Max to execute at South by Southwest, to Evil Genius Design which created PepsiCo Super Shopper game, collaborated with the company on developing and delivering a bunch of new digital solutions.
With such initiatives as PepsiCo10 and Pepsi Refresh Project providing grants to those who improve social sphere, is going on engaging more talents into its project or just supporting good causes not related to promoting PepsiCo products. Growing talents along with selling consumers goods, that is obviously the winning strategy for giant manufacturers, which want to succeed in the coming decades.