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Building an Innovation Management Framework for a Fortune 50 Company’s R&D Pipeline

Delivering technology, market, and consumer intelligence in a complex product market

A confidential Fortune 100 beverage company faced rapidly changing consumer preferences, a noisy technology space, and large brand switching costs. To help manage these external factors, this client sought our assistance in managing its R&D portfolio.

We worked closely with the client to translate consumer and market insights from the client’s marketing division to R&D, and translate technology options from R&D back to marketing and across the organization. Throughout, we emphasized solutions to a range of challenges, including managing opportunities from a wide variety of sources, changing consumer demographics, sustainability requirements, and technology adoption challenges.

Tailored Framework, Targeted Technology Scouting, and Market Landscaping

Our strategy in this complex space was first to design and deploy a tailored framework for our client to populate and manage their one- to five-year R&D pipeline, effectively bringing about progress faster and more strategically. With that framework established, we have since delivered research and analysis covering alternative ingredients, suppliers, manufacturing productivity, and various packaging technologies.

In addition to technology scouting and landscaping, our experts in innovation advising have provided insights on new target consumer demographic segments and facilitated cross-functional ideation sessions.

Distinguishing Signal from Noise

For nearly three years of ongoing, highly collaborative projects with seven different divisions within the company, we have delivered research and recommendations that our client has implemented to transform their innovation activity to be more market-focused and better coordinated across divisions and functions.

Our experts guided the company’s efforts to establish strategic intent, considering a range of opportunities and concepts, and selecting specific technologies that are now the basis of their R&D portfolio. As a result, the R&D organization is more receptive to and more adept at translating consumer insights. Our expert consultation has enabled the client to distinguish signal from noise, particularly in gauging the market readiness for myriad technology options.