5 figuring out elements for a profitable relationship between startups and firms

March 23, 2021 5 min read

This article was translated using AI technologies from our Spanish edition. Errors can occur due to this process.

The opinions expressed by the entrepreneur’s contributors are their own.

By Julieta Vidal, Head of Business Development at Wayra Hispam

It is commonly said that opposites attract; it is a physical law that is in the Corporate and entrepreneurial world Companies find the commitment, risk orientation and adaptability of startups attractive. Innovation, technology and flexibility are attributes of entrepreneurs, and in contrast, companies offer marketing channels, strategic alliances, Contacts with investors and the experience to achieve business expansion and scalability .

The pilots are a gateway that can be used to test the operation of a solution within the company, ie the “first date” that can determine the dynamics and life of the alliance. Both companies and startups strive for sustainable and scalable cooperation If both parties benefit, there are five key factors to consider:

1. Understand the problem

It is important to determine the criticality of the problem the startup is going to solve and to know the requirements in a real way. The answer to the following questions allows us to see if we are facing an alliance with a bright future: Does the solution relate to the core of the business? Is it transversal into different areas? Does it generate efficiency or representative savings? and creates added value?

It is a promising starting point to work on a business case that aims for efficiency or savings, presents solutions for digitizing the company, and responds to critical situations like those involved in the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, the startup Camonapp, supported by Wayra Hispam from Telefónica Movistar, succeeded in scaling its immersive technology multiregionally in 2020 and providing solutions for retail, customer service and marketing by generating a new virtual scenario that replaces the interaction of the Real world consumers in times of pandemic, so customer experiences can be delivered despite constraints.

2. Clarity of goals

Both startups and large companies have their own goals. In a successful collaboration there is a coherence and a shared vision in which it is possible to generate a strategy and a win-win relationship.

It is necessary to set the objectives of the pilot, taking into account the time and steps to be followed if the project continues. This enables a roadmap that creates an incentive to start and achieve the proposed goals.

3. Digital transformation

The pandemic has brought with it the need for businesses to rapidly adapt to multiple scenarios and the introduction of new technologies such as cloud computing, edge computing and IoT. Companies today base their decisions on big data and artificial intelligence in order to be more flexible, more efficient, more competitive and with broad responsiveness.

In this context, it is the startup Webcentrix, which launched its omnichannel customer service platform through Movistar Empresas in Argentina in 2017. Today they have more than 500 clients and they have managed to bring their proposal to Peru, Chile and Colombia for record year-over-year growth. The pandemic opened up an opportunity for businesses to open an efficient customer service channel, reallocate resources to manage digital channels and phone calls from home.

4. Adaptation to processes

In many cases, large companies have to go through an infinite number of internal processes, approvals, and interlocutors in order to make decisions. This creates frustration for entrepreneurs as they are trapped in platforms and dynamics outside of them.

Pre-assigned interlocutors who guide and accompany the adaptation process and their full visibility through a document are very powerful tools to facilitate the initial integration of startups into a company.

5. Patience and perseverance

Since these are two units that work in different ways, times and dynamics may differ. For this reason, patience and persistence are important, taking into account the effort required and the adjustment time, following the established roadmap, making the appropriate measurements, not losing the rhythm and ensuring that the goals are met.

Companies and startups are meant to be fulfilled. There is a mutual need that is compounded by a dizzying context. It’s up to both of you to generate scalable business and success stories.

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