Finding the Right Strategic Partner for Your Business

Transforming an idea into a successful solution doesn’t just depend on who you are as a startup but who you choose as your partner.

NECEC’s first entry in the 2019 Navigate Webinar Series is a unique, entrepreneur-moderated discussion on how you, as a startup or corporation, can succeed in striking the right strategic partnerships. In this webinar, Navigate brings together the energy titan, Enel, the drone-tech start up, Raptor Maps, and the vehicle infrastructure company, eMotorWerks to share valuable insights on forming partnerships that drive innovation and provide long lasting results in the clean energy space. 

The three guiding principles to foster strategic partnerships that are emphasized throughout the discussion are:

  • Setting clear objectives
  • Reciprocal adaptation
  • Potential long-Term relations

As a kick off to the webinar, Luca Seletto, Manager of Enel’s Boston Innovation Hub, provides insights on what it takes for a large corporation like Enel to find and form the right partnerships with startups. Considering its massive scale of operations, Luca discusses how Enel adopted open innovation as its strategy to form partnerships by creating an innovation network ecosystem. Enel formed collaborations with different players to create this ecosystem and chose a specific approach towards partner-creation.

Collaboration vs. Investment: Enel’s approach to partnerships is “collaboration without investment.” The aim is to provide flexibility to startups while still driving their success by becoming customers in order to create the market.

Develop, Market, and Scale: Enel explains the importance of Innovation Hubs to create ecosystems that facilitate the co-development of projects, joint marketing of the innovation and the ability to scale globally in order to maximize gains for both partners.

Stellar examples of Enel’s partnership strategy in action are that of Raptor Maps and eMotorWerks, both of which shared their own case studies during the webinar.

Raptor Maps and Enel:  Eddie Obropta, Co-Founder of Raptor Maps, talks of how the partnership with Enel not only provided value to both businesses but also resulted in their project receiving a grant from the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center. This initial project spun off more joint projects and helped Raptor Maps form a global footprint. 

eMotorWerks and Enel: Alan White, Chief Business Officer at eMotorWerks, explains how their partnership with Enel came into being because Enel’s interest in the new energy space aligned with eMoterWerks’ influence in aggregating electric vehicles. In addition, the exit goals of eMotorWerks matched Enel’s value-add to the industry which sealed the deal for the partnership.

Hence, the Enel strategy, as explained by Director of Innovation Sander Cohan, clearly outlines the goals for each partner, the need for flexibility to find common ground, and the immense potential for long term alliances between corporates and startups.

Watch the webinar to gain valuable insights on how to find the right strategic partner or if you would like to explore partnership opportunities with Enel, Raptor Maps, and eMotorWerks!

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Neritti Lakshman

Neritti is Cleantech Navigate Northeast's 2019 summer Marketing Intern.