Nestlé has announced the launch of the largest R+D Accelerator that provides a platform for startups, students and Nestlé intrapreneurs to quickly bring innovation to the market. The Accelerator will be in Lausanne, Switzerland, at Nestlé’s fundamental research center.
All internal and external teams will have access to Nestlé’s facilities, including science, technology and business expertise. The teams in The Accelerator will be able to innovate products in a six-month “idea to shop” program by learning early trends, differentiating technologies and scientific discoveries that will lead the way.
Individuals in the program will have access to professionals from Nestlé that include food technologists, nutritionists, designers, packaging, regulatory and food safety experts. Additionally, teams will have dedicated coaches and mentors from the senior management team at Nestlé.
“We give internal and external entrepreneurs full access to all the expertise and infrastructure they need to translate their idea into a product – from analytical labs, experimental kitchens, to prototyping and production facilities – and we help them test their innovations in real-market conditions,” said Tom Wagner, head of the Nestlé R+D Accelerator program, in a press release.
Since 2019, more than 100 participants completed the six-month program, tested 33 new products and launched them in more than 300 stores in 12 countries. These products include Garden Gourmet Tempeh Dim Sum, Nesquik Safari, Zoegas Live Coffee and mo ti ve.e & me.
Besides providing the teams with experts to help them achieve their goals, the participants have access to cooking and prototyping facilities, food safety expertise and mini-production facilities. The groups also apply a test-and-learn approach to co-create concepts and products with consumer feedback.
“At our R+D Accelerators we combine the creativity and entrepreneurship of students, start-ups and intrapreneurs with Nestlé’s extensive scientific and technological expertise. The initiative creates learning opportunities for both internal and external talents, builds competencies and fosters an entrepreneurial culture across our sites. It is great to see the passion and excitement of the teams as they go from an idea to a test launch in just a few months, overcoming many different challenges along the way! “said Stefan Palzer, Nestlé’s chief technology officer in the same press release.
The newly inaugurated site is in Nestlé’s research facilities in Lausanne and this location accelerates the translation of fundamental science into cross-category innovations.
The site covers 4000m2 and has a co-working space, prototyping kitchen and mini-production facilities. Here, they can host ten teams simultaneously where they can also have access to the Swiss Food & Nutrition Valley, which is an innovation ecosystem in the food and nutrition world.