Wincanton, the largest British logistics company, has launched W2 Labs – a new programme aimed at challenging start-ups from around the world to develop innovative solutions to industry challenges defined by the Wincanton Group.
Run in partnership with L Marks, the corporate innovation specialist and early-stage investor, start-ups are invited to apply to work with Wincanton across five categories.
- Improving asset utilisation –improving the management of both internal and customer assets.
- Accessing and brokering excess space – helping Wincanton buy and sell under-utilised warehouse space and transport capacity.
- Connected cab and driver technology – creating a better connection between the driver in the cab and vehicle to improve safety, increase efficiency and deliver a better driving experience.
- Data challenges – enhancing the value of our data to improve decision making.
- Wildcard– this is an open category for ideas that could help Wincanton make breakthrough developments in its business model or supply chain market.
Selected start-ups will develop their business proposition with Wincanton and will receive intensive business mentoring from the company’s Senior Executives.
Adrian Colman, Wincanton CEO, said of the W2 Labs launch: “We see new technologies transforming the way the logistics industry works and there has never been a better time to innovate in the sector. That’s why we want to work with the best start-up businesses from around the world to help us to exploit the possibilities of the digital supply chain.”
Stuart Marks, technology entrepreneur and Chairman of L Marks, said: “The launch of W2 Labs is a fantastic opportunity to develop ideas in an increasingly active tech space.”
“Innovation in the sector has been limited to a few large players but Wincanton’s commitment to W2 Labs demonstrates the company’s desire to lead the challenge and find new ways to innovate. I’m excited that L Marks will be joining Wincanton on this journey to discover and work with some incredible start-ups.”
Applications for W2 Labs are open until 9 April 2017, with the best entries invited to pitch in late spring. A 10-week intensive collaboration period between Wincanton and the selected start-ups will then follow, with concepts being demonstrated at the end of the process. At this stage, the concepts could be progressed on a longer-term commercial basis by the W2 Labs partners.