Accelerate Growth Through Data-driven Innovation

4 minute read

*Updated November 2022

The world is entering a new era of transparency that favors a data driven economy, turning away from the traditional relationship economy that has dominated for decades.

As the majority of our daily lives are virtually connected including our communication channels, education and work, this shift is hardly surprising. It’s easier, convenient and allows for more accurate results.

This is also true for innovation as organizations are realizing they can access faster and more frequent innovation through external partnerships.

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Today’s most innovative organizations want access to the wide-ranging innovation alternatives available including research, technologies, talent and new business models. They embrace a holistic approach, featuring strategies that emphasise forward-thinking ideation, agile collaboration, and seamless execution

This is where Valuer comes in: by connecting the innovation economy. Valuer is a data-driven AI platform bridging the innovation gap by connecting corporates with startups that can help them advance their internal innovation through external partnerships.

[Related article - Bridging the Gap Between Structure and Innovation]


The powerful relationship between innovation and exnovation

How we invent things and the state of business today are changing. Many companies pay a great deal of attention to innovation, whilst exnovation is rarely subject to the same focus, even though most large companies are better at undertaking the latter than the former.

Within large companies, innovation is highly sought after. In fact, the World Economic Forum states that nearly 75% of companies say innovation is one of their top three management priorities, but only 20% are fully ready to deliver the innovation they see as being critical to their success. Yet its close relationship with exnovation is usually overlooked often to the detriment of progress and growth.


What exactly is the difference between innovation and exnovation?

Whilst innovation focuses on creating something that is new and unique, exnovation focuses on taking an innovation and appropriating it through upscaling, standardization, replication, smart marketing and improvement of innovation processes.

In the business world, larger companies, often unknowingly, have a good understanding of exnovation competencies as they have the resources, customers, organization and procedures available.

Yet they lack innovation.

Startups on the other hand, have limited access to these resources but often have stronger innovation capabilities due to their flexible and agile business models, giving corporates the access to creativity, new ways of working, and proficiency with new technologies.

In order to bridge this gap, data-driven innovation platforms such as Valuer aim to connect the resources and exnovation of corporations with the innovative minds at new technology companies, thus mixing innovation and exnovation.


The power of corporate relationships

Harvard Business Review notes on the importance of corporate partnerships, stating “the ability to identify and work with partners is a powerful source of competitive advantage, particularly when it comes to creating new growth products, solutions and business models."

With vast access to data-driven innovation, corporations are now able to receive regular updates about game-changing innovation within their industry and potential key startups leading the way. This also means as this information is becoming more freely available, corporations need to incorporate both innovation and exnovation to stay relevant in the business world.

the ability to identify and work with partners is a powerful source of competitive advantage, particularly when it comes to creating new growth products, solutions and business models."

It is no longer viable for businesses to invent internally and if organizations want access to speedy innovation, they need to connect with external partners.


Data-driven innovation: a key factor in speed

Copenhagen Business School Professor Michael Moesgaard Andersen states that “data-driven innovation” is what’s currently allowing “incumbents to strike a new balance between innovation and exnovation.

The largest companies today are all data-driven. Think Google, Alibaba and Amazon. The key factor driving the innovation within these companies is speed. Utilizing a speed driven data-based platform should be a key goal for corporations.

These platforms aim to discover and detect relevant innovations, whilst also incorporating quantitative and qualitative data powered by Artificial Intelligence. 

Utilizing a speed driven data-based platform should be a key goal for corporations” 

Most quantitative data comes from existing databases whilst qualitative data is gleaned from several interviews over a period of time with specific companies. The AI capabilities then process several factors including talent, management and competitive strengths and weaknesses.

By analyzing relevant data and patterns, an organization can quickly discover and access a new world of trends and ideas that may just be a solution for their customer base.


Bridging the gap between classic strategy and innovation

Data driven platforms are allowing corporations to find a balance between accessing innovation with startups, and their own exnovation capabilities. These platforms use large amounts of data to connect innovative startups providing a quick and easy path for companies to source external innovation.

It is no surprise that data-driven innovation has become increasingly popular within the last decade as corporations and startups are becoming to realize their complementary nature.

Many corporations lack innovation and growth, with only about 30% of companies stating they are good at innovation. Yet companies have access to a wide array of resources and their customer base, thus are able to scale up projects they undertake. Startups provide this complimentary innovation and growth capability.

Access to a corporation's customers and resources can allow for the partnership to scale. By utilizing these digital technologies, large companies are taking advantage of the abundance of data in order to sustain and grow their business models.


Combining innovation and exnovation

In recent years, big data and the development of AI have delivered several new ways to combine innovation and exnovation.

If you are looking for a specific type of innovation or a specialized startup to help your needs, data-driven information can help. It is also possible to acquire information about the probability of a particular startup’s chances of survival, an overview of potential game changers and information on potential unicorns.

One example of a company utilizing data-driven innovation is Danish manufacturing company Grundfos. They have realized the potential of data-driven innovation and actively seek startups through curated AI-based searches. By doing so, they are able to track industry-specific innovation and learn of new ideas and methodologies.

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Valuer’s data-driven AI platform

Innovation platforms such as Valuer’s are effectively utilizing artificial intelligence (AI) to bring data-driven innovation to corporations and investors by curating a list of relevant startups for their specific needs.

During the data collection process, Valuer combines both qualitative and quantitative techniques creating in-depth content for every startup. Using well-defined search criteria provided by corporate clients and the AI utilization for future prediction, the end result culminates in a deeply curated analysis for potential innovation.

valuerValuer’s Innovation Radar tool helps clients be guided through a six step matchmaking process that identifies the best-fit startups for their relevant needs. Valuer’s Innovation Themes Enterprise Solution is another tool that allows for discovering new and growing disruptive markets whilst the Academy serves as an educational tool featuring frequently updated content regarding innovation and corporate/startup engagement to help drive innovation within an organization.

Valuer uses ‘micro-level’ information that has been built from the ground up, has assessed more than 650,000 startups, and made more than 650 corporate-startup matches.

Data-driven platforms have provided an easy and quick solution for corporations to decide on how to innovate and exnovate through collaborating with startups.


In today’s business world, it is not enough to just internally innovate. Companies need to embrace both innovation and exnovation in order to stay relevant within their respective field. The key method of doing so is by forming corporate relationships and partnering with external groups, especially startups, and embracing data-driven innovation in order to fully utilize the power of cooperation.

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