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FT Innovate 2015

Big vs small: Which one is better?

London |  - 
Speakers include:
Bethany  Koby

Bethany Koby

Technology Will Save Us

Michael Smith

Michael Smith


Andy Page

Andy Page



Big v small: which one is better at coming up with and executing the big idea?

There is a story going round the business world: big companies can’t innovate. They’re all about inefficiency, stifled by bureaucracy and stuck in the past when it comes to the nimbleness required to generate and execute the best ideas. 

Instead, all the best innovation is coming from start-ups, especially those in the tech world. Inspired by Silicon Valley, mantras like the ‘pivot’ and ‘failing fast’ and fuelled by new digital tools, they can do in months what it would take a big company years to achieve.

But is this big bad, small good narrative too simplistic? Are the big guns fighting back? Or is the future of innovation really a story of how big and small companies will work together, as each seeks to figure out a way of working with the other? 

Key themes:

  • Big v small: which is really better at meaningful innovation?
  • The innovation exchange: how are big and small companies working together? 
  • What are big companies doing to take the best of small ones? 
  • What can start-ups learn from big corporates, especially when it comes to scaling?

Videos (25)

Rick Goings Twitter Interview



Corinne Vigreux Twitter Interview



Nick Holzherr Twitter Interview





Podcast - View from the top


The Startups (17)

Bethany  Koby

Bethany Koby

CEO and Co-founder
Technology Will Save Us

Bethany Koby is a mom, CEO, designer, educator and art director interested in creating brands, businesses and experiences that help imaging a more positive and collaborative future.  

In 2012 Bethany co-founded Technology Will Save Us - a business dedicated to sparking the imagination of young people using hands-on technology. Their beautifully designed DIY Gadget kits and digital resources are the most accessible way for families, young people and educators to make, play code and invent with technology.

Their DIY Gadget Kits have celebrated for their deisgn and learning outcomes. In 2014 their DIY Gamer Kit was acquired by the Museum of Modern Art as part of the permanent design collection; They are also shortlisted for designer of the year in 2015 by the London Design Museum; Their gadget kits and resources are used by families around the kitchen table all over the world and used in local schools and STEM clubs to address the shifting landscape of skills and creativity necessary for 21st century citizenship. This juxtaposition of iconic design, accessibility and playful learning is a diving force for the Tech Will Save Us growing ecosystem.

As the CEO, Bethany is responsible for its strategic growth, partnerships and balancing innovative products with their core learning agenda.

Bethany holds a BFA in Graphic Design from Rhode Island School of Design (with honours) and a MSC in Responsibility and Business practice (with distinction) from Bath University and was an invited scholarship holder at Fabrica in Italy. She has been creating innovative relationships between brands and communities for well over 10 years both commercially and personally.

Michael Smith

Michael Smith

VP of Product

Michael has spent 20 years working in technology as a developer and product manager. He has worked for Google as a PM for ad networks, for Qualcomm as a Principle Engineer in asset tracking, government systems and satellite telephony, for Amazon to help launch Marketplace, for Yahoo as a PM for search, INQ Mobile as Head of Software Development to create a new OEM brand, and for IBM to create network firmware. Currently he leads product development at SwiftKey. On Android, SwiftKey Keyboard was the biggest-selling app on Google Play in 2012 and 2013 before going free in June 2014. It’s
been a No 1 hit in 58 countries to date. Both Apple and Google Play named SwiftKey Keyboard one of the best apps of the year in 2014, and the technology features on 250 million devices.

Michael holds an MBA from UCLA, a Masters in CompSci from University of Arizona and an undergrad degree from Penn State. He is a very active participant in amateur dramatics in London and loves photography.

Andy Page

Andy Page


Andy Page brings corporate leadership and deep operational expertise to 23andMe. He has been a member of the 23andMe board of directors since 2012 and joined the company as President in 2013. As President, Andy manages all functional areas of the company. In addition, he is responsible for developing the company's business strategy and identifying opportunities for long-term growth and industry leadership.

Before joining 23andMe, Andy served as the President of Gilt Groupe, an online luxury shopping destination, where he oversaw the Company's various businesses and operations including Women's, Men's, Kids & Baby, Home, Park & Bond, Gilt City and Gilt Taste.

He joined Gilt in April 2010 as the Chief Financial Officer and transitioned to President in 2011. Prior to joining Gilt, Andy was Chief Operating and Financial Officer at PlayPhone, Inc., where he was responsible for managing the company's multinational operations. Before PlayPhone, Andy was Chief Financial Officer and SVP of Business Strategy of StubHub Inc.

Margaret  Heffernan

Margaret Heffernan

CEO and Author

Dr. Margaret Heffernan produced programmes for the BBC for 13 years.  She then moved to the US where she spearheaded multimedia productions for Intuit, The Learning Company and Standard&Poors. She was Chief Executive of InfoMatio Corporation, ZineZone Corporation and then iCast Corporation, was named one of the “Top 25” by Streaming Media magazine and one of the “Top 100 Media Executives” by The Hollywood Reporter.  

Margaret now blogs regularly for Inc.and the Huffington Post. Her third book, Willful Blindness : Why We Ignore the Obvious at our Peril was a finalist for the Financial Times Best Business Book Award 2011, and the book was named one of the most important business books of the last 10 years. In 2015, she was awarded the Transmission Prize for  A Bigger Prize: Why Competition isn’t Everything and How We Do Better, described as “meticulously researched…engagingly written…universally relevant and hard to fault.” Her TED talks have been seen by over three million people and in 2015 TED commissioned and published Beyond Measure: The Big Impact of Small Changes. She advises CEOs and senior executives of major organizations and is Lead Faculty for the Forward Institute’s Responsible Leadership Programme.

Corinne  Vigreux

Corinne Vigreux

Co-founder and Managing Director,
TomTom Consumer

Best known as one of TomTom’s founders, Corinne Vigreux combines an instinctive understanding of technology with a flair for innovation. She is currently Managing Director of TomTom’s Consumer Business Unit.
Running through all her professional activities is a belief in the power of technology to enable products that help real people in the real world. She is passionate about democratising technology and making it more accessible, more usable, and more affordable to all. This approach led to the TomTom Go, which single-handedly created the satnav category for consumers and empowered millions of drivers worldwide. Other examples include numerous subsequent TomTom satnav products, fitness watches and the new action camera.
Her career started at Psion in 1987 where she built Psion’s international distribution network. Psion was one the first highly successful European technology start-ups where she gained her love for tech and her passion for adventure.

Komal Ahmad

Komal Ahmad

Founder and CEO
Feeding Forward

Komal was a student at the University of California, Berkeley and training to become a Naval Officer, when she was first exposed to poverty, homelessness, and hunger. It struck a very personal chord with her when she realized that so many impoverished individuals were veterans who had selflessly fought for her country and were now begging for food. Determined to make food more equitably accessible, she founded Feeding Forward. Feeding Forward enables businesses and organizations with excess food to feed communities in need, instantly. She has streamlined food donation and distribution through this food management platform making it easy, reliable, and legally safe for businesses to donate their surplus food and have it delivered to those in need, eliminating both food waste and hunger. Her organization has already recovered over 730,000 pounds of food, fed over 610,000 people, and helped businesses receive over $3.6M in tax savings. 

Phil  Libin

Phil Libin

Co-Founder and Executive Chairman

Phil Libin is the co-founder and executive chairman of Evernote, the company that is creating tools for an increasingly global and mobile modern workforce. He previously served as the company’s CEO for eight years.  

Phil is an entrepreneur and executive who has led two Internet companies from the very beginning to proven commercial success, and helped three others through rapid growth. Prior to joining Evernote, Phil founded and served as president of CoreStreet, a company that provided smart credential and identity management technologies to governments and large corporations throughout the world. CoreStreet was acquired by ActivIdentity, now owned by HID Global, in 2009. Previously, Phil was founder and CEO of Engine 5, a leading Boston-based Internet software development company acquired by Vignette Corporation (VIGN) in 2000, where he went on to serve as principal architect and chief technologist for applications.

Nick  Holzherr

Nick Holzherr


Nick is a serial entrepreneur and the CEO of, a smart grocery shopping list application that allows users to send their lists into online grocery supermarket baskets with a few clicks.

Since launching in 2012, the company has won many of the UK’s biggest Retailers, FMCG brands and digital food publishers as clients. Dan Cobley, Google MD UK and Ireland, said “Whisk is making the moment to buy really matter”.

Nick has raised over $2m in funding for technology investors for Whisk, after pitching the business to Lord Sugar following getting to the final of the BBC Apprentice 2012, where he achieved the series’ best task-win record.

Before Whisk, Nick founded two successful start-up companies after graduating with a 1st in International Business from Aston University. In 2011 he was named Birmingham Young Professional of the Year for entrepreneurship after being named Emerging Entrepreneur of the Year by Business Insider in 2010.

Chris  Loughlan

Chris Loughlan

Cambridge Institute for Innovation

Chris is CEO at the Cambridge Institute for Innovation, an organisation that co-develops innovation strategy, provides education for innovation skills development and evaluates the impact of innovation investment.  He holds a PhD from the University of Glasgow and is a Fellow of NCEE.  Published his first book in 2013 on the power of creative combination and his second An Innovation Manifesto is due for publication in November this year.

Alex  Stephany

Alex Stephany


Alex Stephany is an entrepreneur and writer based in London. He serves as CEO of JustPark (formerly, the world's largest peer-to-peer parking website. The service generates millions of pounds annually for families, churches and businesses, ranging from high street retailers to the world's largest parking companies and hotel groups, by letting them rent out their parking spaces when they are not being used. At the same time, its web and mobile applications provide cheap parking without parking tickets to over half a million drivers. is backed by Index Ventures and BMW i Ventures, the venture capital arm of BMW.

In 2013, he launched, a programme to install electric vehicle charging points at homes across the UK. It is now the world's largest peer-to-peer electric car charging network: the next generation of petrol stations but zero-carbon and people-powered. He also mentors at Techstars and Launch48, the leading tech accelerator programmes in the UK. He is an advocate and expert on the sharing economy and the disruptive power of peer-to-peer businesses.

Mr Stephany has been profiled by Wired and appeared on Sky TV, Bloomberg, The Today Programme and NPR radio among many others. He loves online startups for their ability to unleash ideas to huge communities of people and realise unforeseen environmental efficiencies.

He started his career as a corporate lawyer, and holds a First in English Literature from Oxford University.

His new book, The Business of Sharing: Making It In The New Sharing Economy, is being published by Macmillan and due to be released in March 2015.

Stan Laurent

Stan Laurent

Group CEO
PhotoBox Group

Stan Laurent joined PhotoBox as Group President and Chief Executive Officer in July 2006. Stan’s vision of creating the European leader in personalised products has led PhotoBox Group to more than tenfold revenue increases across 20 new countries, a product line stretching into multiple hundreds of choices, and three strategic acquisitions, all of which has combined to create a family of flagship online retail brands: PhotoBox,, Sticky9, PaperShaker and Hofmann.

His passion for new technologies and international exploration has driven him throughout his career. After graduating from the ESCP Europe business school in 1989, Stan’s first professional endeavour took the form of 16 months’ military service as 2nd Lieutenant in the French Navy, including 3 months aboard a nuclear submarine.  Back on dry land, Stan started his career in Berlin, not long after the fall of the Berlin Wall.  During this time he was part of a team charged with assessing and privatising state assets at the German Privatisation Agency.

Kate  Jackson

Kate Jackson


Kate has co-founded multiple businesses and has held CEO and COO roles for the last 8 years. She is master of many trades, with experience spanning all areas of online businesses. She is an expert in growing and engaging communities both online and offline. She is always striving for change and improvement. Kate is currently CEO of TableCrowd, an event tech platform for business networking dinners. She has built a loyal and engaged community by delivering valuable private dining experiences to growing tech businesses. The dinners have attracted after dinner speakers and partners from Natwest, Facebook, Wahanda, Transferwise, Time Out and Graze amongst others. Since launch, all the key tech press, broadsheets & glossy magazines have joined their tables. Earlier this year, Kate was voted one of the top 5 women in Event Technology globally (the only UK vote).Prior to co-founding TableCrowd, Kate co-founded ClickTonight, a meeting and parties website and SilkFred, a marketplace for independent fashion brands. Shehas since started a tax consultancy for EIS and SEIS. Within 6 months, she developed this into a thriving business, now operated by a small team.

Louise  Nolder

Louise Nolder

Head of Brand and Communications
Just Giving

Louise Nolder is Head of Brand and Communications at JustGiving, where she is helping the organisation shape its own story and develop its offers to its partners. Previous to this, she spent nearly 20 years as a strategist at leading communications agencies Ogilvy & Mather and AMV BBDO, working with brands as diverse as Pedigree, Ocado and EasyJet and building famous campaigns for the likes of Dove, Aviva and BT. When not engaging in the agile behaviours demanded by a modern tech company (swarming, sprinting, pivoting etc.)  Louise can be found recovering at home with her children, or in the river… where she competes in long-distance open water swim races.

Alice  Bentinck

Alice Bentinck

Entrepreneur First

After McKinsey & Co, Alice turned down an offer from Google to found EF alongside Matt. She taught herself to code, and founded Code First: Girls in 2013 to help more women get into tech. She sits on the board of Sherry Coutu's Founders4Schools, is on Imperial College London's Department of Computing Industrial Liaison Board, and acted as the Prime Minister's expert on startups at the Northern Future Forum. She has been recognised in Management Today’s 35 under 35 and the Evening Standard’s Top 1000 most influential Londoners.

Melissa  Morris

Melissa Morris

CEO and Co-Founder
Network Locum

Melissa is CEO and Co-Founder of Network Locum, which is an online marketplace where doctors can find and book shift work. Network Locum has been running for 3 years, has raised in total £4m in venture finance and employs 30 people in Shoreditch. 

Melissa started her career in banking, working for Citigroup's Investment Banking Division, she then moved to management consultancy and spent two years at strategy consulting firm Mckinsey&Co.

When she came up with the idea for Network Locum, she realised the importance of "eating your own dogfood" and took a job at the NHS for a year to better understand how it worked. 

Network Locum has 10% of GP practices in the UK using it. It has been featured in The Sunday Times, City AM, The Guardian, BBC radio, The Independent on Sunday, and SkyOne as critical to the survival of the NHS.

Steve Leonard

Steve Leonard

Executive Deputy Chairman
Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore

Steve Leonard is an industry veteran with more than 28 years of experience working in leading global technology companies. In his position as Executive Deputy Chairman, he holds executive leadership responsibility for Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA), with a special focus in industry promotion and development. This includes spearheading the building of innovative start-ups and local enterprises, overseeing various national cross-sectoral programmes, technology and communications infrastructure development and the strategic planning and development of qualified professionals for the ICT sector. Prior to joining IDA, Mr Leonard was the President of EMC Asia Pacific and Japan (APJ) where he was  responsible for driving EMC’s growth and market share leadership in APJ, enhancing partner and channel relationships and contributing to product-development efforts throughout the region. Before joining EMC, he served as President of the Asia-Pacific and Japan business for Symantec and Veritas. Prior to those executive management positions, Mr Leonard spent 18 years with EDS, where he focused on European and Asian operations for 12 years, ultimately rising to the position of President of Solutions Consulting for Europe, the Middle-East, and Africa. Mr Leonard currently sits on the Boards of IDA Singapore, IDA International and Infocomm Investments Pte Ltd.

Paul  Sloane

Paul Sloane

The Innovative Leader

Paul Sloane is the author of The Leader’s Guide to Lateral Thinking Skills and The Innovative Leader. He writes, talks and runs workshops on lateral thinking, creativity and the leadership of innovation.  He graduated from Cambridge University with a degree in Engineering.  He was Marketing Manager with IBM, MD of Ashton-Tate and VP International of MathSoft.  He is a prolific blogger on innovation topics and has over 28000 followers on Twitter.


The Big Companies (17)

Emma  Allen

Emma Allen

Lead Inventor
?What If!

Emma leads the Disrupt Community at ?What If! London where she focuses on working with ambitious leadership teams to embrace the disrupt challenge and map their disruptive future.  She has helped create hybrid organisations to identify, incubate and build new multi-million dollar businesses that combine the scale and resources of major corporations with the speed, mindset and execution of a start-up. Emma is cloaked in creativity, colour, and curls, with a core of commercial curiosity. Her running streak throughout her career has been an energy around driving the ‘sweet-spot’ intersection of creative thinking, strategic clarity and hard-nosed analysis. Most of all, she is driven by brave thinking.

Before ?What If! Emma worked her strategic muscle at Mckinsey across a number of sectors. Emma was first inaugurated into the business world at L'Oreal, where she gained experience in everything from testing shampoo formulas to driving lipstick sales on counter. Most of her time however was spent as Product Manager on L’Oreal’s fastest growing brand, Kiehl’s, where she set up their Corporate Sales program and retailer e-commerce operations. 

Passionate about art in all capacities, you can often find Emma holding a brush aimed at a canvas (or even her face).  Born and bred in London, Emma's true happiness is found in escaping London for countryside adventures, swiftly followed by an indulgent pub lunch.

David Bunch

David Bunch

Global VP, Retail Marketing

As global Vice President Retail Marketing, David Bunch is responsible for leading the strategic marketing direction for Shell’s branded Retail products, services and digital solutions.  This includes accountability for CRM loyalty initiatives, digital and social media, payment solutions and the retail customer experience for over 20 million customer transactions daily.  David is also responsible for Shell’s connected car initiatives, working closely with major OEM and technology companies to bring innovative digital infotainment and payment solutions to market.  

In 2014 Shell ranked #1 brand for online effectiveness amongst the World's 80 largest companies (FT-Bowen Craggs 2014 Index) and in the UK Shell was voted best British Company, Social Media effectiveness,  in February 2015 (Investis Digital Corporate Communications).

David has lived and worked in Japan, the US and now resides in London where he is also the Chairman of Shell Brands International, on the CMO board of the Houston chapter of the AMA and an active London Business School alumni.

David and his family are avid travellers and explorers – taking every opportunity to disconnect from a digital device and explore nature.

Fred Jansen

Fred Jansen

Mission Manager
Gaia and XMM-Newton

Fred Jansen was Rosetta mission manager of from Jun-2013 until Feb-2015. This period covered the hibernation exit, comet approach, landing and post-landing operations periods.

He is currently is mission manager of Gaia and XMM-Newton.

Fred studied astrophysics at Amsterdam University (Netherlands). During his study he participated in a Leiden/MIT program which launched a balloon borne set of X-ray detectors observing the universe. He got his PhD at Leiden University (1988) on a thesis of X-ray observations of supernova remnants (the hot and bright remains of exploded stars). After his PhD he worked on the development of one of the X-ray instruments for the XMM-Newton observatory.

Barbara  Novick

Barbara Novick

Vice Chairman

Barbara G. Novick, Vice Chairman, is a member of BlackRock's Global Executive and Global Operating Committees and Chairs the Government Relations Steering Committee. From the inception of the firm in 1988 to 2008, Ms. Novick headed the Global Client Group and oversaw global business development, marketing and client service across equity, fixed income, liquidity, alternative investment and real estate products for institutional and individual investors and their intermediaries worldwide. In her current role, Ms. Novick heads the firm’s efforts globally on Government Relations and Public Policy, and she serves as a board member to the BlackRock Equity-Liquidity and BlackRock Closed End fund families.

Prior to founding BlackRock in 1988, Ms. Novick was a Vice President in the Mortgage Products Group at The First Boston Corporation. Ms. Novick joined First Boston in 1985 where she became head of the Portfolio Products Team.  From 1982 to 1985, Ms. Novick was with Morgan Stanley.

Ms. Novick has authored numerous articles on asset management and public policy issues.  Ms. Novick is a member of CFA Institute’s Future of Finance Advisory Council and Reuters’ Editorial Advisory Board.  She currently serves as a Trustee of Cornell University, UJA-Federation, and the HCM Foundation, and coaches in the Westchester Youth Soccer League.  Ms. Novick previously served on the boards of Robert Toigo Foundation (2007–2010), City Harvest (2010-2012) and Westchester Day School (2000-2005), and served as both Treasurer and Trustee of Westchester Jewish Center (1994-2012).  Ms. Novick earned a BA degree, cum laude, in economics from Cornell University in 1981.

Milko  Van Duijl

Milko Van Duijl

Senior Vice President, Regional Sales, UK and Ireland
CA Technologies

Milko Van Duijl has almost 30 years of IT business experience, accumulated in both developed and emerging markets.

Prior to joining CA Technologies in October 2015, he held senior positions at Lenovo Group Ltd. in Hong Kong, where he served as both Senior Vice President (SVP) and member of the Lenovo Executive Committee and President of Asia Pacific & Latin America.

Before this, Milko was SVP for the ‘Mature Markets’ division of Lenovo, based in Paris. In this capacity he contributed to Lenovo becoming a leading PC company, including numerous quarters in which Lenovo was the fastest growing company in the industry.

Brian  Gammage

Brian Gammage

Chief Market Technologist

Brian Gammage is VMware’s chief market technologist for end-user computing. He leads a team focussed on delivering support to customers as they define their own journeys towards the next generation of end-user computing. 

With 28 years’ IT sector experience, the former Gartner Fellow is an influential voice in the end-user computing market and a leading expert in the development of workplace transformation strategies. Brian is focused on developing the company’s vision for end-user centric IT, addressing the operational and security challenges of an increasingly mobile workforce as well as the burgeoning diversity of data, applications and devices now entering the workplace.

Brian is based in the UK but his remit is global. Prior to joining VMware, Brian worked at Gartner, HP, Olivetti Systems and Acorn Computers.

Phil Cox

Phil Cox

Head of EMEA and President UK Branch
Silicon Valley Bank

Phil Cox is Head of EMEA and President of the UK Branch for Silicon Valley Bank. He has over 30 years’ experience in commercial banking in the UK and joined Silicon Valley Bank in 2009 to lead the Bank’s UK and Israeli business units. Phil successfully led Silicon Valley Bank’s application to the FSA to be granted a full UK banking licence, enabling Silicon Valley Bank to provide full commercial banking services and financial solutions to technology companies in the UK. He is responsible for developing the Bank's business across the EMEA region and is a member of the Bank’s Executive Steering Committee.

Prior to joining Silicon Valley Bank, Phil was the head of Commercial Banking at Bank of Scotland in London, a division of Lloyds Banking Group, overseeing relationship management, origination and operations.

David  Brown

David Brown


David is recognised as a global  leader in payables led finance. He personally championed the reception of payables in the Bank of England commission report endorsing supply chain finance as a solution to the liquidity crisis caused by the credit crunch. He has been influential in framing US and UK government policy on early payments

Minoru Usui

Minoru Usui


Mr. Minoru Usui is currently president of Seiko Epson Corporation. He has shown strong leadership in realigning Epson as he seeks to create a company that is indispensable to our customers and society.

After graduating from university, Mr. Usui says he was attracted to Shinshu Seiki (currently Seiko Epson Corporation) for its “passion for opening up new domains with its original technologies,” joining the company in 1979. After first being responsible for evaluating miniprinters for desktop calculators, he was then involved in a project to plan, design and bring to market a thermal printer for desktop calculators.

In 1988, he transferred to the Inkjet Printer Development Dept., and over the next two years he solidified the development concepts for Epson’s current Micro Piezo technology. It was at this time that he envisioned the future possibilities that piezo technology could bring to the printing domain. As a result of his breakthrough developments and passion for the technology, in 1990 he was given leadership of a project development team of 80 engineers and others chosen from across the organization, and commercialization of Micro Piezo technology began in earnest. This resulted in the first Micro Piezo consumer printer in 1993, and formed the basis of the inkjet printer business that was to grow so rapidly. Due to the success of this and ensuing projects, in 1997 he was made general manager in charge of inkjet development., and in 2002 was promoted to company director and deputy COO of Epson’s printing business overall.

Violetta  Senda

Violetta Senda

European Digital Strategist

Violetta recently joined Avanade as their European Digital Strategist helping financial services clients leverage digital to shape the future of their company.


Violetta spent last 12 years at Citi and Barclays across various business areas: Digital, Finance, Securitization, Business development, Collections and Operations & Technology. Most recently Violetta helped Citi to develop and implement a global digital transformation strategy, shifting the company’s strategy from traditional banking to becoming a world’s leading digital bank by focusing on commercialisation of online banking services, improvement of client experience, and increasing digital adoption and engagement.
Violetta also lead planning and execution of a wide range of cross-business initiatives to meet the banks’ strategic objectives, e.g. establishing CoE’s, building relationships with strategic business partners, joint ventures relationship management, mergers and acquisitions deals, and alliances. Violetta holds two master degrees in Mathematics & Physics and Computer Science & Econometrics. She recently earned CFA charterholder (CFA), is a Chartered Management Accountant (CMA), and holds an Investment Management Certificate (IMC). Violetta speaks Lithuanian, Polish, English, Russian and Portuguese.

Jeff  Moriarty

Jeff Moriarty

Chief Digital and Product Officer
Johnston Press

Jeff Moriarty is Chief Digital and Product Officer at local media owner Johnston Press and has had a broad career across newspapers and digital media. Before moving to the UK last year he was Vice President of Digital at The Boston Globe and General Manager for where he was instrumental in driving significant digital success across the portfolio.

Jeff, whose innovative product development is underpinned by a journalistic background, spent much of his career at The New York Times Company where held a number of vice president and general manager roles in classified products, product & technology, new media, and product management. He designed and developed what is considered to be among the most successful regional subscription-based sites in the US – the award-winning, known for its pioneering use of Responsive Web Design to embrace the shift to mobile devices.  

Elizabeth Real

Elizabeth Real

Managing Director
?What If!

Elizabeth leads our European business, creating growth strategies for our clients, our business and our own people, the most passionate innovation talent in the market.  She has a well-honed gift in cultural foresight that blends with deep understanding of commercial and organisational dynamics to create future-ready businesses that help our client partners grow in today’s disrupted world.  She leads our team in dissecting behaviours and attitudes of the customers and employees of today, to bring bold thinking that will unlock the business opportunities of tomorrow. She was a key part of the growth of ?What If! in the Americas, launching new brands, products and services in everything from wealth management to hospitality, technology to consumer goods, and trebling the size of our operation in the process.Prior to joining ?What If!, Elizabeth was lead strategist at Faith Popcorn's BrainReserve, where she developed future-focused innovation strategies and brand cultures for her clients—including Novartis Pharmaceuticals, PepsiCo, the Democratic National Committee, and Colgate-Palmolive—wrote Faith Popcorn's Notes from the Future, and led insight development for the Popcorn Report Live.  She trained as a brand strategist at agency giants Grey, McCann-Erickson and Young & Rubicam.

A native Californian, Elizabeth is discovering London’s live music scene and is at work on her second novel.

Chris Rowett

Chris Rowett

Vice President
CA Technologies

Chris Rowett is Vice President of Technical Sales, Application Delivery, CA Technologies. In this global role, he is responsible for helping organisations adopt a truly transformative approach to delivering high quality applications faster, and at lower cost. Application delivery is the foundation of CA Technologies’ DevOps strategy and Chris leverages his 20+ years in the software industry to help enterprises and partners with this goal. Prior to joining CA Technologies, Chris held management positions in sales, technical sales and professional services for application, middleware and database companies. This includes IBM United Kingdom Ltd., where he held the position of Services Lead; OpenPages Software (UK) Ltd. (acquired by IBM), where he was Director of Professional Services for EMEA/APAC; and Cape Clear Software (UK) Ltd., where Chris was Managing Director for EMEA.
Chris, who is based in the UK, holds a BSc (Hons) in Computer Science from the University of Kent at Canterbury. Married with three children, his hobbies include fitness, cycling, running and the gym.

Rick  Goings

Rick Goings

Tupperware Brands

Rick Goings is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Tupperware Brands Corporation, a leading global marketer of relationship-based selling.  The portfolio includes not only Tupperware, but multiple beauty brands including Avroy Shlain Cosmetics, BeautiControl, Fuller Cosmetics, NaturCare, Nutrimetics, and Nuvo Cosmetics brands.

While still in college, Goings founded one of the nation’s first direct sellers of home security systems.  He was recruited to Avon Products Inc. in 1985 where he held a number of senior management positions:  including President Avon Germany, Group Vice President & Senior Operating Officer Pacific Rim, and President of Avon USA.  He joined Tupperware in 1992 as President of Tupperware Worldwide.

For more than twenty years he has served on the national Board of Governors of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America, where he also served two terms as National Chairman.  Additionally, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America honoured him with their highest award, the Herbert Hoover Humanitarian Award, for his outstanding leadership as their National Chairman. 

Erik  Kruse

Erik Kruse

Networked Society Evangelist & Director Networked Society Lab

Driving the Ericsson Networked Society vision and developing new insights in the Networked Society Lab. Working as an Evangelist with around 150 presentations annually, towards mainly C-suite across different market segments. Erik is working on Ericsson strategic marketing with focus on future opportunities, emerging new business models, future consumer behavior, transformation of networked industries, disruption in industrial structures and future societal needs. Do strategic advice and consulting to customers in the area of IoT , industry verticals, future strategies for telecom, TV and adjacent industries. Advisor to Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation “Financial Services to the poor”. Wrote “Innovation Radar -Future Media and Content Delivery” with Professor Magnus Boman, SICS and “A journey to the 3rd place” a book about early adopters in the telecom space.  

Giuseppe  Zocco

Giuseppe Zocco

Index Ventures

Giuseppe Zocco co-founded Index Ventures with David Rimer and Neil Rimer in 1996. His investment focus is on growth-stage companies in the areas of online services and software, e-commerce and digital brands.  

His current investments include, Zendesk (Nasdaq: ZEN), The Cambridge Satchel Company, Moleskine (MSK.MI) and  Privalia. He was involved with several prior Index investments, including RPX (Nasdaq:RPXC), Ciao AG (Microsoft), Milestone Systems (Canon), MutuiOnLine (MOL.MI), Numerical Technologies (Synopsis), Virata (Nasdaq: VRTA, Conexant) and Digiquant (Intec). 

Prior to founding Index, Giuseppe spent five years as a consultant with McKinsey & Company in several European offices, advising major corporations on a number of strategic and organizational matters, including European entry strategies, strategic positioning, marketing, and new product introductions.

Steve Parker

Steve Parker

Strategy Partner
M&C Saatchi

Steve joined the advertising world 11 years ago at Grand Union, one of London’s original digital agencies. A six-year stint saw him take on projects for a range of clients including Waitrose, Max Factor, Coca-Cola and Best Buy, along with some enterprising social media campaigns for Myspace, Bebo and Boots. After moving to Lean Mean Fighting Machine in 2011, he led digital strategy for Foster's and a number of Unilever projects including the launch of World Baking Day. As a strategy partner at M&C Saatchi, he heads up the Land Rover strategy team, most recently developing the brand’s ‘#Hibernot’ campaign to launch its new Discovery Sport SUV.


The Commentators (2)

Chris  Turner

Chris Turner


“Beautifully crafted one-liners, witty wordplay” – BBC

Chris’s sharply written gags, assured stage presence and blisteringly quick improvised raps have established him as one of the best up-and-coming comics on the international circuit, performing in the UK, USA, Australia and New Zealand. 

His keen wit and intelligent wordplay have seen him rack up over 1.8 million views on YouTube; headline for 1 million Dutch comedy fans on RTL4's flagship stand up show, The Comedy Factory; appear live on BBC Radio 2 and 6Music and perform sold-out runs at festivals worldwide.

In 2014, his debut show Pretty Fly won the Amused Moose People's Choice award for best show at the Edinburgh Fringe, with many of his jokes featuring in 'Best Jokes of the Fringe' lists in national newspapers. His new show for 2015, XXV, has already toured to Perth Fringe World, where it was nominated for Best Comedy.

As both a comic and improviser, Chris has showcased his jokes and freestyle rap skills in the UK corporate market, performing for Chelsea FC, HP, NEC, The Royal Air Force, The Royal Electrical & Mechanical Engineers, The UK Mortgage Senate, along with various smaller organizations.

Michael Mandel

Michael Mandel

Chief Economic Strategist
Progressive Policy Institute

Dr. Michael Mandel is known for his ability to identify emerging economic trends, both good and bad. As chief economic strategist at the Progressive Policy Institute (PPI), a centrist Washington DC think tank, he provides policymakers with cogent policy briefs on such topics as the impact of regulation on innovation and growth, the effect of the international tax system on the location of innovation, and the Internet of Things.

As president of South Mountain Economics (SME), an economic consulting firm, Mandel is one of the leading experts on emerging occupations and emerging industries. He recently did a series of reports on the tech/info sector in London, New York, and San Francisco. Mandel is regularly quoted in publications such as the New York Times, Bloomberg, Financial Times, Atlantic, Time, and Forbes.

Chaired by (2)

Andrew Hill

Andrew Hill

Associate Editor and Management Editor
Financial Times

Andrew Hill is an Associate Editor and Management Editor of the FT. He writes a weekly column, a blog and in-depth articles on global business, strategy and management.

Andrew was City Editor of the FT and editor of the daily Lombard column on British business and finance from September 2006 to December 2010. Since joining the FT in 1988, he has also worked as Financial Editor, Comment & Analysis Editor, New York Bureau Chief, Foreign News Editor, and correspondent in Brussels and Milan.

He was named Best Commentator at the 2009 Business Journalist of the Year Awards, where he also received the Decade of Excellence award for sustained achievement in business and financial journalism.

He graduated from Trinity College, Cambridge, in 1987 with a degree in English.

Ravi Mattu

Ravi Mattu

Technology, Media and Telecoms News Editor
Financial Times

Ravi Mattu is the technology, media and telecoms editor of the Financial Times. Since joining the FT 15 years ago, he has spoken to CEOs, entrepreneurs, prime ministers as well as some of the world’s leading management thinkers. From the founders of Uber and Nest, to the CEOs of Microsoft and Vodafone, to the man who came up with virtual reality and Lady Gaga’s manager, Ravi has interviewed some of the most creative people in business today.

Through working with thought leaders in a variety of fields, Ravi has developed unique observations on the topics of technology, innovation, entrepreneurship, global trends in business and the changing nature of the workplace.

Ravi joined the Financial Times in 2000 and has held a number of senior positions at the newspaper, including editor of Business Life (the management section of the paper) and acting deputy editor of the FT Weekend Magazine. He is a former editor of Special Reports (magazines and websites), during which time he edited a number of titles, including Mastering Management. He was also launch editor of FT Wealth.

He is co-chair of FT Innovate, the paper’s annual conference that brings together cutting edge ideas and business leaders.

Before joining the FT, Ravi worked as assistant editor, acting deputy editor and senior editor at Prospect Magazine from 1997 to 2000.

Who Attends?

FT Innovate is designed and tailored for forward-thinking senior executives responsible for making innovation happen in their companies, including: 

  • CEOs
  • Heads/Directors of Innovation
  • CIOs/CTOs/Heads of Technology
  • Heads/Directors of Research & Development
  • Heads/Directors of Product/Brand Development
  • Heads/Directors of Marketing
  • Heads/Directors of Strategy

Benefits of Attending

  • Experience this year’s much more immersive and participatory programme format
  • Gain valuable insights from practical, ‘nuts & bolts’ presentations, based on real industry experience
  • Understand the real steps you and your company need to take to make innovation happen
  • Keep abreast of latest trends and developments in innovation thinking
  • Hear outstanding speakers talk incisively about innovation’s failures, hardships and successes
  • Be inspired, informed, and reenergized by some of the best innovators in the business
  • Learn from the big name companies and innovation practitioners, and from the upstart start-ups


Who Should Sponsor?

Any company or organisation wanting to position themselves as being innovative, or consolidate and amplify their reputation as innovation leaders

  • Providers of innovation consultancy and any other business consultancy and advisory services
  • Technology vendors with innovative solutions for medium-large organisations
  • Big Data technology solution providers
  • Dedicated innovation technology providers including PLM and similar software
  • Executive recruiters
  • Investors in innovation (private equity, banks etc.)
  • International or regional development agencies seeking inward investment from innovative companies and industries

Why Sponsor?

Would your company benefit from high-profile alignment with this premier thought-leadership event?

Sponsorship of FT Innovate enables your company to benefit from the powerful positioning and brand-alignment offered in all pre-event marketing. Your branding appears on all direct-mail, the event website as well as many full-page and quarter-page advertisements that we run for the event in the Financial Times - a major advertising and marketing campaign offering co-branding with the FT and its annual innovation themed event.

Sponsorship also offers a chance to get some immediate return on investment through the many benefits we offer on the day of the summit, where sponsors get to meet and influence the 150+ C-level executives who attend this event. Using our online networking tool, sponsors get access to the delegates they specifically want to meet, increasing their chances of new lead generation.

Among the many other benefits, we offer some sponsors a chance to demonstrate their thought-leadership through a speaking opportunity, subject to editorial approval (keynote presentations, panelists, roundtable hosts), and also demonstrate their products or services with a publicity stand in the foyer space where all refreshment and lunch breaks take place. 

For further information please contact Joe Hames on or

+44 (0) 207 873 4551.


Agenda - 3rd Nov

  • 8:30am
    Registration & networking tea and coffee
  • 9:00am
    Chair’s opening remarks

    Andrew Hill, Management Editor, Financial Times 

  • 9:10am
    Opening Keynote Interview

    Tupperware Brands Corporation: Fortune magazine has called this $2.6 billion company one of the world’s most admired. And, while this iconic brand continues to hold a place in American pop culture, in over 80 countries around the world it is also a coveted household brand name. 

    Ask CEO Rick Goings, and he will tell you that empowering women around the world to be small business owners is what drives the company’s success. Learn how the company has continued to stay relevant as it has grown into far more than food storage, tailoring and customizing its innovations to markets around the globe.

    Goings will also shed some light on the company’s relationship marketing model and how it manages a salesforce of nearly 3 million women while staying true to a strong company value system.

    Rick Goings, CEO, Tupperware Brands

    Interviewed by

    Andrew Hill, Management Editor, Financial Times 

  • 9:45am
    Panel: Big Vs Small

    Which one is better at coming up with and executing the big idea?

    Are big companies really bad at innovation and small start-ups just naturally more creative and agile? Or is big getting better and better at it – and doing it at scale.

    Our panellists will introduce the key features of the small argument and the big argument.

    Giuseppe Zocco, Co-founder, Index Ventures
    Michael Mandel, Chief Economic Strategist, Progressive Policy Institute

    Moderated by

    Andrew Hill, Management Editor, Financial Times 

  • 10:00am
    Noises Off: Discussion in the Room

    Our audience, joined by the Big vs Small panellists, will be asked to pick a key feature of the big or small argument, and debate this in more detail at their tables. An opportunity to have conversations that matter, inform, and surprise. 

  • 10:20am
    Our 'roaming chair' will probe further, and gather your feedback

    Questions will be volleyed around the room. An exciting opportunity for delegates to be part of a debate with a room full of peers

    Andrew Hill, Management Editor, Financial Times

  • 10:35am
    Big v Small panel to sum-up and conclude

    Giuseppe Zocco, Co-founder, Index Ventures
    Michael Mandel, Chief Economic Strategist, Progressive Policy Institute
    Andrew Hill, Management Editor, Financial Times 

  • 10:45am
    Innovating in the Sharing Economy

    Innovating through the Sharing Economy: 4 Strategies for Corporates to Tap into Sharing Economy Disruption

    Alex Stephany, CEO, JustPark

  • 11:00am
    Networking tea and coffee break
  • 11:30am
    Practical tips for small startups* on finding and keeping top talent

    - Why it's a tough and worsening environment in the war for talent
    - Attracting the best and getting them excited
    - Thinking out the hiring process (process is key)
    - The elephant in the room - there probably isn't career progression within your startup - but that's OK

    Melissa Morris, CEO, Network Locum

    * note from the organiser, 'big companies' will find this interesting too!

  • 11:45am
    Inventing a Creative Tech Tool to Empower a Generation

    Bethany Koby, co-founder and CEO of Technology Will Save Us will explain the role her organisation played in the design of the new BBC micro:bit. The BBC micro:bit will be delivered to over 1 million school-age students in the UK. 

    Bethany Koby, CEO and co-founder, Technology Will Save Us 

  • 12:00pm
    Fireside Chat

    Corinne Vigreux, Co-Founder and Managing Director, TomTom 

  • 12:30pm
    Networking buffet lunch
  • 1:30pm
    FT Innovate View from the Top Interview

    A rare opportunity to hear from, and question, the global president of Epson - Minoru Usui - on his vision for the Japanese high-precision technology company, which was founded more than 70 years ago, and which was once synonymous with the dot-matrix printer. Epson continues to lead the way in global technological innovation and to push the boundaries by expanding on its traditional strengths as a manufacturing company.

    You’ll have the opportunity to ask Minoru Usui – an inventor in his own right – about how he comes up with new ideas, what gets in the way of making them happen, about his thinking on wearable technologies, whether small is better, how sensing technologies are impacting the way we live, and how industrial robots are changing the face of global manufacturing.

    Minoru Usui, President, Seiko Epson 

    Interviewed by

    Andrew Hill, Management Editor, Financial Times

  • 2:00pm
    Big AND Small: The Application Economy

    To prosper in the Application Economy every business will have to go through a digital transformation, whether big or small, and learn to think as customers do, to optimize their customer experience. Every company will be a software company regardless of the industry in which they operate.

    As a startup company, being agile and innovative is easy because you can operate in small scale, there’s no legacy infrastructure or existing customer base that you need to take into consideration and you work on a vision with a few passionate people . However the challenge is to scale to a large size operation.

    As a large enterprise, you have the scale and established customer base but it’s so much harder to be agile and to introduce innovative new approaches or products. So are scale and agility competing factors? Is it one or the other, but not both? 

    Milko Van Duijl will explore both worlds to see not just how they can learn from each other but how they can work together  to grow their businesses further when they build eco systems of value around customers, generating new revenue streams and building unshakable brand loyalty

    The speed at which you can deliver new customer experiences – Time to Market (TTM) –becomes one of the critical success factors in the Application Economy which in turn will require increased agility of all businesses and, as we all learned from Darwin, it is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.

    Milko Van Duijl, Senior Vice President, Regional Sales, UK and Ireland, CA Technologies

  • 2:20pm
    CASE STUDY ‘Small’

    After pitching his idea to Lord Sugar on The Apprentice, Nick went on to raise funding for his start-up – a smart shopping list tool that helps people around the world discover, organise and enjoy recipes and food. Since it’s launch in 2013, the startup has partnered with many of the world’s leading publishers, retailers and food brand and received a number of industry awards, including Cisco British Innovation Gateway award, The Drum’s ‘One to Watch’ honour, The Grocer's ‘Top New Talent’ award and the PPA Digital ‘Newcomer of the Year’ award.  

    Hear about Nick’s journey from original idea to running a successful startup. He will speak openly about lessons learned and establishing the right balance between following what's been done by others and ignoring these models to spot new trends, opportunities and challenges that define the future.

    Nick Holzherr, CEO, (BBC Apprentice Finalist) is generating a lot of enthusiasm. Since the company's launch in 2013 it has won a Cisco British Innovation Gateway Award, The Drum’s ‘One to Watch’ honours, The Grocers’ ‘Top New Talent’ award and the PPA Digital ‘Newcomer of the Year’ award.  

  • 2:40pm
    Networking tea and coffee break
  • 3:00pm
    Roundtable Innovation Brainstorm

    An opportunity for delegates to generate new ideas and ways of solving problems with corporate leaders and topic experts, in small, mixed-sector groups with a maximum of 12 delegates per group. Delegates will explore questions that get at the bedrock fundamentals of innovation, bring new thinking to current challenges,network, and discuss the hottest, up-to-the minute topics of interest to those whose job it is to make innovation happen in their companies.

    Sessions hosted by:

    • Komal Ahmad, CEO and Founder, Feeding Forward
    • David Brown, CEO and Founder, Remitia
    • David Bunch, Global VP, Retail Marketing, Shell
    • Phil Cox, Head of EMEA and India and President of UK Branch, Silicon Valley Bank
    • Nick Holzherr, CEO,
    • Chris Rowett, Vice President, CA Technologies
    • Corinne Vigreux, Co-Founder and Managing Director, TomTom Consumer
    • Kate Jackson, Co-founder, TableCrowd
  • 4:30pm
    The New Growth Playbook In The Age Of Disruption

    Most leaders today feel a palpable sense of upheaval in the world around them. There is a collective sixth sense that something large, fast and disruptive is happening. We will discuss this unprecedented historical position where the rules of our world are being re-written. And talk about how, for those businesses astute enough to recognise and re-engineer for this shift, there are huge opportunities to participate and thrive in this new world order.

    Elizabeth Real, European Managing Director,?What If!
    Emma Allen, Lead Inventor, ?What If!

  • 4:55pm
    Closing Keynote Talk & Interview

    The founder of one of today’s most ‘notable’ start-ups will talk about what the future of work and personal life productivity will look like, on the importance of something being ‘sufficiently epic’ before doing anything with it, and – recognising the importance of small and agile in making innovation happen - on Evernote’s quest to become a 100-year old start-up. 

    Phil’s session will include paper, scissors and stone. 

    Phil Libin, Co-Founder and Executive Chairman, Evernote

  • 5:45pm
    Chair’s closing remarks followed by drinks reception

Agenda - 4th Nov

  • 8:30am
    Networking tea and coffee
  • 9:00am
    Chair’s scene-setting and opening remarks

    Ravi Mattu, Tech, Media and Telecoms Editor, Financial Times

  • 9:05am
    Keynote Address with Audience Q&A

    Margaret Heffernan, Entrepreneur, CEO and author 

    Is innovation a moment – or a process? Why are some people, and some organizations, more creative than others? What difference does structure make? 

    Every business Margaret Heffernan has run has been characterized by high levels of innovation, in the US and UK. Her books have analyzed how creative organizations thrive or fail. So what does her experience and research show about how innovation occurs in practice. Is there such a thing as talent? Does culture matter? Why do CEOs decry the lack of creativity in the workforce while that same workforce decries the lack of opportunity? Is innovation a romantic pipedream or a strategy?

  • 9:45am
    Innovating at Scale

    Barbara Novick's talk will centre on the importance of continuing to innovate even as a firm grows.  She will look at the need to listen to clients,  factoring in the evolution of the regulatory environment and capital markets, and embracing change and turning it into opportunity. 

    Barbara Novick, Vice Chairman, BlackRock

  • 10:10am
    Operationalizing a Mission Driven Company

    The 23andMe’s mission is to help people access, understand and benefit from the human genome. For almost 10 years, this mission has defined the culture and identity of the company.  23andMe is presented with many opportunities around the world to pursue the adoption of consumer genetics, and the company is also faced with many constraints ranging from regulatory requirements to management bandwidth to budgetary.  With an employee base that consisted mostly of a strong group of geneticists, engineers and researchers, Andy Page led the process to enhance the leadership team, business model, and operational experience.  Andy will discuss how embracing the mission of the company and guidance from the CEO/founder are essential to introducing business discipline and realizing the potential of 23andMe.  How can change be impacted most effectively in start-up environment?  How should risk taking and risk mitigation be considered?  How should the inevitable change in culture be managed?  These are a few of the questions Andy is likely to explore.

    Andy Page, President, 23andMe 

  • 10:30am
    Embracing innovation in big organizations

    Big organisations and innovation……a much debated topic. Violetta will talk about innovation in big organisations, focusing on banks. What startups need is capital, talent, distribution and scale while enterprise wants new markets, growth, and new capabilities. Quite different needs and that’s why so often innovation adoption is falling short at an organisation level. Violetta will discuss how to build new growth opportunities in a scalable, repeatable way
    Violetta Senda, European Digital Strategist, Avanade

    Violetta Senda CFA, European Digital Strategist, Avanade

  • 10:45am
    Networking tea and coffee break
  • 11:15am
    5 X 5 ‘Innovation Pearls’

    Five innovation concepts/ideas that would be useful in everyday practice, but may not be that well-known. Each of our five speakers has five minutes and 20 slides to explain the concept. Slides advance automatically every 15 seconds.

    • Komal Ahmad, Founder and CEO, Feeding Forward
    • Stan Laurent, Group CEO, PhotoBox
    • Chris Loughlan, CEO, Cambridge Institute for Innovation
    • Michael Smith, VP of Product, Swiftkey
    • Jeff Moriarty, Chief Digital and Product Officer, Johnston Press

    Followed by 30 minute audience Q&A

    Moderated by 
    Ravi Mattu, Tech, Media and Telecoms Editor, Financial Times 

  • 12:15pm
    Achieving the Impossible with Business Mobility

    The world of business continues to shift at an ever faster pace: emerging business models, new competitive threats; and employees who are now mobile-natives. Mobility is critical for success in every business – locational mobility in operation; economic mobility in market presence; social mobility in engagement with customers and employees. Business mobility gives organisations the edge, to innovate and achieve things that previously seemed impossible. Brian Gammage will talk about why business mobility matters, why it is no longer about devices or just about being on the move, and how VMware’s vision is allowing everyone to work at the speed of life. 

    Brian Gammage, Chief Market Technologist, VMware

  • 12:30pm
    The luxury of limitation: 5 ‘small’ behaviours powering big growth for JustGiving

    JustGiving is one of the UK’s leading digital brands. But how can an organisation retain its maverick spirit, whilst also generating billions of dollars of charitable donations?  Hear how a big business like JustGiving continues to champion small, startup-style behaviours, to build scale without blowing out timelines or budgets. 

     Louise Nolder, Head of Brand and Communications, Just Giving

  • 12:45pm
    Innovation Improv

    Two precepts central to improvisation are a) listen, and b) say yes - to even the most outlandish sounding proposition. These are also defining characteristics of successful innovators. 

    In this session, Chris will improvise around the theme of innovation and using words and phrases thrown into the mix by the FT Innovate audience. This’ll be edge-of-the-seat, by-the-seat-of-the-pants stuff!

    Chris's sharply written gags, assured stage presence and blisteringly quick improvised raps have established him as one of the best up-and-coming comics on the international circuit, performing in the UK, USA, Australia and New Zealand. He’s racked up over 1.8 million views on Youtube.

    Chris is a founder of Racing Minds, the critically acclaimed UK-based long-form improv comedy quintet. Edinburgh Fringe Sell-Out Show 2014 and 2014. 'Clever, funny and satisfying' - The Sunday Times

    Chris Turner, British comedian and freestyle rapper

  • 1:00pm
    Networking lunch
  • 2:00pm
    The ‘David & Goliath’ Arena: Disrupt! (or be disrupted)

    Four chairs are arranged in an inner circle. This is the 'arena'. The remaining chairs are arranged in concentric circles outside the arena. Two participants are selected to sit with the moderator in the centre, while the rest of the group sit on the chairs outside the arena. One chair is left empty. 

    Our moderator will introduce a 'starter topic', and then the subsequent direction of conversation will be shaped by our audience, as delegates enter and leave the arena. 

    Moderated by:

    Ravi Mattu, Tech, Media and Telecoms Editor, Financial Times  

    Conversation starter:

    Alice Bentinck, Co-founder, EF

  • 2:45pm
    Growth Through Payments – Corporate Liquidity for SMEs

    How Innovation in B2B payments uses big data and machine learning to provide a scalable solution whereby large corporates can help address the biggest challenge to  SME survival – cash flow and access to liquidity.

    David Brown, CEO, Remitia

  • 3:00pm
    FT Innovate ‘Global Dialogue’ Topic Vote
  • 3:05pm
    Networking tea and coffee break
  • 3:25pm
    The FT Innovate Global Dialogue

    This panel will examine the key topic, voted into discussion by delegates, that has emerged during the course of the two days. The conversation will then be taken up and developed further at the FT Innovate US conference in December, and to be continued at FT Innovate 2016.

    Steve Parker, Strategy Partner, M&C Saatchi
    Steve Leonard, Executive Deputy Chairman, Infocomm Development Authority, Singapore
    Erik Kruse, Networked Society Evangelist & Director Networked Society Lab, Ericsson
    Paul Sloane, author, The Innovative Leader

    Moderated by

    Ravi Mattu, Tech, Media and Telecoms Editor, Financial Times

  • 4:15pm
    The Last Word

    Government is often accused of being too big and cumbersome to innovate well. The Rosetta mission - which involved international collaboration, and years and years of planning - contradicts that narrative, exemplifying instead big, non-corporate innovation at its very best.

    Fred Jansen, who was responsible for the successful 2014 landing of a probe on a comet (and the first satellite to orbit a comet) will be talking about the mission and about the trials, tribulations and rewards of ‘big’ innovation. Expect lots of space visuals!

    Dr. Fred Jansen, Former Rosetta Mission Manager, European Space Station, Mission Manager, Gaia and XMM-Newton

  • 5:30pm
    Chair’s closing remarks


The FT Innovate Roundtables take place over two hours on the afternoon of Day 1 of FT Innovate and are designed to help generate ideas and ways of solving problems with peers and experts. Roundtable facilitators are either topic specialists or industry practitioners.


Will you be Helpless or a Hero in the Application Economy?

The Application Economy is here, every business is a software business and customer expectations are rising as they engage with your organisation via multiple channels such as mobile, web, call centres etc, so how are you doing in terms of putting customers at the heart of your business and building an eco systems of value around them?

This roundtable will discuss how to build customer loyalty,  return on investment and why you cannot afford to ignore this new business imperative.  Does your organization understand both the opportunity and the danger of ignoring the new reality, what role can you play to bring this to the table, if your board or leadership team has yet to recognize it?

Of course, there are challenges but we'll  examine how you can approach and plan for the new relationship that your customers expect.  With category disruptors entering new markets every day, how can you prepare to not just protect your core business but challenge and grow into others as well?  Why wait for the new Uber to eat your lunch? 

Hosted by

Chris Rowett, Vice President, CA Technologies


  • Growth and Innovation: Is it possible to have the best of both worlds?
  • How can a startup keep its culture while scaling up and growing?
  • Or does a growing company need to accept the fact that with growth and size comes a decrease in agile decision making and innovative ideas?

Hosted by

Corinne Vigreux, Co-Founder and Managing Director, TomTom Consumer


Innovative Financing for Innovative Businesses – How do you finance non-traditional tech businesses?

From historic performance to future forecasts, how should innovative businesses approach their financing options as they look to grow? For non-traditional tech businesses – many of which have no “hard assets” that lenders traditionally look for – accessing innovative forms of financing is vital as they look to move their businesses forward.

In this session Phil Cox, Head of EMEA and President of UK Branch at Silicon Valley Bank, will discuss access to capital in global markets. The challenge of fundraising for non-traditional tech businesses is still a major problem, with 86% of UK innovation businesses saying that raising capital is still a huge challenge. Phil will be investigating who is providing the capital these days, as well as:

  • The practicalities of access to finance – practical guidance and advice on how to obtain financing from your bank;
  • Plentiful capital is a reality – in the UK alone, 58% of UK businesses innovation successfully raised capital in 2014 (up from 51% in 2013) – but fundraising is still a challenge;
  • Next round funding, from VC to debt financing;
  • Government grants and alternative sources of funding

Hosted by

Phil Cox, Head of EMEA and India and President of UK Branch, Silicon Valley Bank


Searching for, finding and implementing innovation

We will:

  • Discuss and rank the different ways to search and find innovation in existing teams and businesses.
  • Discuss case-studies of large firm initiatives to search for innovation, discussing pros and cons of each.
  • Look at how innovation should be managed. Should businesses look for consensus on ideas to take forward or give different teams ownership of ideas?
  • Discuss what type of people should lead innovation in large businesses - top performing business managers or Internal rebels?
  • Understand what tolerance for failure of internal innovation is acceptable or ideal? Does that exist already?

Hosted by

Nick Holzherr, CEO, (BBC Apprentice Finalist)


What Will Drive the Self Driving Car?

With research pointing to 100% of new cars being data-connected by 2025, and the likelihood that 75% will feature driverless technology by 2035, this roundtable will discuss the role retailers, OEMs and technology companies will play in shaping the connected car experience.

Themes for debate will include how new features such as on-board diagnostics, infotainment, safety enhancements, seamless connectivity, and driverless technology impact the way businesses interact with motorists. David will look to prompt informed conversation and draw on the experiences of delegates to do so, while speaking to some of the unique opportunities marketers face with this truly disruptive technology giving rise to a new breed of automobile.

Hosted by:

David Bunch, Global VP, Retail Marketing, Shell


Food: The Next Frontier For The Sharing Economy?

At least half of the food that’s grown is wasted along the way to consumers’ plates. Some of this is in the inefficient transportation and distribution of food, still more is lost through waste at restaurants and food service establishments, and by far the most is a result of food spoilage on the part of consumers. No matter what the contributing factor, it’s clear that we’re wasting far too much in an effort to feed so few. And, with population growth expected to exceed 10 billion by 2050, we have to find more efficient ways to grow, distribute and use our food to minimize the waste stream. Unsurprisingly, this is an area that entrepreneurs have been paying particular attention to over the past few years, exploring new opportunities to turn yesterday’s food waste into something useable today.

What’s being done to raise awareness for, and to reduce, food waste? What are new innovations coming out of the foodtech system that are helping operators on various levels create greater efficiencies to reduce food waste? How can we make better use of food waste? What more is needed to address this growing challenge?

Hosted by:

Komal Ahmad, CEO and Founder, Feeding Forward


'To pay or not to pay' Is that the question?

- How do large corporates instantly transform liabilities into assets on their balance sheet?
- Why should large corporates care about CSR and how can they use payments to promote it?
- How can changing the days to payment create jobs and improve the economy?
- Why is there £67bn owed in late payments to SME's in the UK alone?
- Is it fair to assume that existing early payment solutions for SME's do not appear to be working efficiently?

Join us for a discussion looking at and addressing the limitations of existing B2B payment solutions and the focus on a need for a new innovative approach.

Hosted by:

David Brown, CEO and Founder, Remitia


What factors are prevalent in innovative organisations?

This session is about discussing and identifying the factors prevalent in startups and big organisations that lead to innovation - and those that restrict it. Everyone around the table will be able to bring their own experiences to the conversation.
It’s easy to attribute the differences to culture, bureaucracy or size but this is all top level and doesn’t give a real insight. We’ll get into the nitty gritty, with real examples and experiences from both sides of the table (pun intended).
The outcome of the session will be a checklist of factors for a deeper understanding of why innovation is or isn't being achieved in a particular organisation.

Hosted by:

Kate Jackson, Co-founder, TableCrowd

Companies and individuals with relevant thought-leadership can apply to invest in hosting their own FT Innovate Roundtable.

For more information please contact Joe Hames +44 (0) 207 873 4551



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Stoney Street
London SE1 9AA
Tel: 0044 (0) 20 7940 8300



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Lead Sponsor (1)

CA Technologies makes software for businesses that are development-driven, because we believe those who build the apps will own the future. We help our customers succeed in a future where every business—from apparel to energy—is being rewritten by software. From planning to development to management to security, at CA we create software that fuels transformation for companies in the application economy. With CA software at the center of their IT strategy, organizations can leverage the technology that changes the way we live—from the data center to the mobile device. Our software and solutions help our customers thrive in the new application economy by delivering the means to deploy monitor and secure their applications and infrastructure. Our goal is to help organizations develop applications and experiences that excite, engage and open up money- making opportunities for their businesses. CA solutions power innovation by helping organizations to understand, plan, manage and control infrastructure ensure the best possible business outcomes.

Associate Sponsor (4)

Avanade leads in providing innovative digital services, business solutions and design-led experiences for its clients, delivered through the power of people and the Microsoft ecosystem. Our professionals combine technology, business and industry expertise to build and deploy solutions to realize results for clients and their customers. Avanade has 27,000 digitally connected people across 23 countries, bringing clients the best thinking through a collaborative culture that honors diversity and reflects the communities in which we operate. Majority owned by Accenture, Avanade was founded in 2000 by Accenture LLP and Microsoft Corporation.

Every offering in the supplier finance market requires CONNECTIVITY and/or INVOICE APPROVAL. Remitia requires neither of these. Waiting to approve an invoice before offering finance, results in lost time and opportunity to maximise funding and therefore a substantial loss in revenue.

Remitia provides instant payments of supplier invoices, creating immediate income for buyers with zero risk, zero balance sheet impact and zero process change. Through data, we make the SCF industry more efficient, less risky and more inclusive.

Remitia’s truly scalable 'plug and pay' solution is delivered though banks and driven by buyer payment data. Remitia’s proprietary payment analytics map supplier behaviour to determine risk and eligibility into the programme. Remitia actively targets the SME’s in the supply chain, removing risk.

Using current and historical buyer driven data and proprietary analytics, Remitia acquires and transforms data to execute instant payments of supplier invoices before approval, creating immediate income for buyers with zero risk, zero balance sheet impact and zero process change. 
Remitia’s unique and innovative approach enabling growth through payments aims to level the playing field, allowing large firms to create shareholder value whilst giving small and midsize firms the opportunity to create innovation and growth.

VMware, the industry-leading virtualization and cloud infrastructure software company, enables organizations to innovate by streamlining IT infrastructure and operations, freeing IT resources for investment in strategic innovation. A pioneer in the use of virtualization and policy-driven automation technologies, VMware simplifies IT complexity across the entire data center and out to user workspaces, empowering IT to move at the speed of business.

For over 20 years, ?What If! Has partnered with organizations hungry for growth. We invent new products, brands, services, and business models, and we help our partners build their in-house innovation capabilities. Our style is provocative and passionate. Our mission is lasting impact.

Supporting Partners (4)

Innovate Finance is an independent not for profit membership organisation serving the global FinTech community. It aims to accelerate the UK’s position as the number one global hub for FinTech by directly supporting the next era of technology-led financial services innovators and entrepreneurs. Together they are bringing new financial products and services to consumers - and enhancing the diversity, resilience and inclusiveness of the sector. Founded in 2014 Innovate Finance has attracted more than 120 members ranging from seed startups to major global financial institutions. As the industry body for the FinTech community, Innovate Finance serves as a single access point to the full financial services and technology ecosystem and – through our curated innovation programmes and partnerships with other organisations – connect members to policymakers, regulators, investors, customers, educators, talent and key commercial partners.

Jeff Skoll created the Skoll Foundation in 1999 to pursue his vision of a sustainable world of peace and prosperity. Led by CEO Sally Osberg since 2001, our mission is to drive large-scale change by investing in, connecting, and celebrating social entrepreneurs and the innovators who help them solve the world’s most pressing problems. Social entrepreneurs are society’s change agents, creators of innovations that disrupt the status quo and transform our world for the better. By identifying the people and programs already bringing positive change around the world, we empower them to extend their reach, deepen their impact, and fundamentally improve society.

ISPIM - International Society for Professional Innovation Management - is a network of researchers, industrialists, consultants and public bodies who share an interest in innovation management. Founded in 1983 by Professor Knut Holt in Norway, ISPIM is the oldest, largest and most active innovation association in Europe, rapidly expanding in the Americas and Asia.

Level39 is Europe’s largest technology accelerator for finance, cyber-security, retail and future cities technology companies.

Through a tailored curriculum programme and its network, Level39 turbocharges company growth by providing access to investors, industry experts, mentors, jobs, news, education, thought-leadership and more. 

Six months after launching, Level39 opened another floor 'High Growth Space: 42' and in January 2015, launched its second floor 'High Growth Space: 24' - occupying 80,000 square feet of One Canada Square.

Level39 was launched by the Canary Wharf Group in March 2013 and has hosted over 1000 events and 90,000 visitors since its inception.

FT Innovate 2015

Highlights from 2015 event:

Innovate images


FT Innovate 2014

Details of FT Innovate 2014 can be found HERE

Highlights from the 2014 event:

FT Innovate 2014  London.   Flickr   Photo Sharing


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