How Accelerator Programs drive growth and innovation for corporations

How Accelerator Programs drive Growth and Innovation for Corporations

In an era where innovation is a necessity, companies are increasingly turning to business accelerator programs to surface novel approaches, create new strategic directions and generate change. Accelerators can help corporations identify up and coming innovations in their market, build on emerging trends, and enable team members to learn new and agile ways of working.

One such accelerator is PepsiCo’s Greenhouse Accelerator program, which is designed to nurture the growth of breakthrough startups and foster a culture of innovation across the sector. Through the Greenhouse Accelerator program, spearheaded by a collaboration between DevGlobal and Atomic Brand Labs, PepsiCo can push the envelope in areas such as climate sustainability, the circular economy, agriculture, and diversity and inclusion.

The Greenhouse Accelerator program takes place across a large and diverse geography – with one running in Asia-Pacific, one in the Middle East/North Africa and one in the U.S. focused on Hispanic flavors and small businesses. In 2023, the Accelerators reached thousands of entrepreneurs, startups and small businesses through their messaging and fast-tracked 26 startups to growth.

“Being a part of the accelerator program opened doors to a wider network of industry professionals, potential collaborators, and investors. This expanded network has been instrumental in forging partnerships, gaining exposure, and exploring new distribution channels.”

– Juntos Crecemos 2023 Finalist

This year, the Greenhouse Accelerators are being run in the Asia-Pacific region and the U.S. with a focus on sustainability and supplier diversity, respectively. Each of the selected startups received a grant of $20,000, mentorship from subject matter experts, and support in identifying market and partnership opportunities to accelerate the growth of their businesses. At the end of each program, one winning startup will be selected to receive a final $100,000 grant.

Companies and Mentors at Juntos Crecemos launch event

Leading the way towards a brighter and more sustainable future

By running different programs, PepsiCo can focus on different regional challenges and opportunities. Previous editions, like the Middle East/Northern Africa (MENA) Edition, aimed to advance sustainable practices in agriculture, crucial for food security in the region. The Asia Pacific (APAC) Edition, running this year, has focused on sustainability and combating climate change by supporting startups with innovative solutions. Finally, the Juntos Crecemos Edition empowers food and beverage startups celebrating Hispanic cultures and flavors in the United States, fostering inclusivity and innovation in the industry.

The impact of the Greenhouse Accelerator program is also felt on a human level. By empowering startups to tackle pressing global challenges, such as climate change and food security, the program embodies the potential of business to drive positive change in society. Moreover, by championing diversity and inclusion, it creates opportunities for underrepresented entrepreneurs to thrive, thereby enriching the entrepreneurial landscape with fresh perspectives and ideas.

Covering such a wide swath of the world, breadth of topics, and depth of expertise is challenging in traditional research and development processes, making accelerators a valuable innovation and social impact tool for companies, organizations and foundations around the world. The Greenhouse Accelerator program serves as a shining example of how companies can direct their resources and expertise for innovation and sustainability. It’s about identifying new strategic directions and leading the way towards a brighter and more sustainable future.

Interested in what an accelerator program could look like for your company? Keep reading – or get in touch now!

How DevGlobal Can Help

Running an impactful accelerator requires regional and subject matter expertise, community building and support acumen, event and logistics skills and program management.

DevGlobal’’s international team is uniquely positioned to excel here, given our expertise in cross-cutting areas including global agriculture, health, development, climate, innovation and global supply chains. Additionally, our Community Building team executes both time-bound events, such as pitch competitions and award ceremonies, and broader community-building efforts like generating buzz, bringing together innovators and identifying experts.

For PepsiCo, we are managing the two-month application window, sourcing over a hundred applicants per program and shepherding them through selection processes; coordinating the mentorship program, selecting experts whose knowledge would strengthen the work of selected startups; designing and executing a four-month learning process for startups; and hosting unique final events for each Accelerator, where nearly a hundred individuals came together to learn from both the selected startups and a hand-picked panel of industry expert judges.

Across such varied activities and spaces, we’re excited to bring our diverse skills and backgrounds together in service of your innovation goals.