Article
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05.05.2020

The one thing

Kostas Grigoriou

Nearly a year ago, I joined High Alpha. I remember quite vividly how excited I was about the vision of the team I was joining. It could be summed up in one question:

How do we deploy the venture studio model to help large organizations innovate through startup creation?

It made so much sense.

Before my first day at High Alpha — and before I had experienced the true power of the venture studio — I found myself talking to anyone and everyone who would listen about how promising that vision really was. I have studied and witnessed firsthand just how challenging it is for corporations to innovate, and it was abundantly clear to me how the venture studio model is a prime solution. Soon, as a member of the High Alpha Innovation team, I discovered the true power behind the model and uncovered about a million reasons why it's been, and continues to be, a game-changer for large organizations.

Right when I felt the most confident about having all the answers, a colleague of mine asked me a question that gave me pause: “What is the one thing that your corporate partners get from working with High Alpha Innovation?”

What a tough question. How can I boil everything down to one thing?

It's all about our Sprint Week. Our forcing function for building new business - it is an intensely magical process. Corporations often trip because they lack such forcing functions.

No, it's about our speed. We launch a new company every 8 weeks. Scaled corporations just can’t support that level of speed internally.

You know, it's the B2B SaaS expertise. After building, scaling, and exiting a portfolio of B2B startups we just know what it takes. In the grand scheme of things, venture studios are a relatively novel business model that most corporations have never dabbled with — but they want to.

Oh no, it's our ability to launch and scale. We guide these young startups through a sea of uncertainty to help them learn and succeed during their first year. Corporations underestimate learning and over-index on quick scale and profitability.

You know what? No. It's probably our ecosystem of talent and partners. Attracting amazing CEOs, co-founders, and venture capitalists to build great companies with us. Corporations don’t have access to that kind of talent and external validation.

So many thoughts. But still, what is the “one thing?"

If I really had to choose, though, the one thing that our corporate partners get by working with us is expert conviction — the confidence to pull the trigger, to “just do it” and build a company with us. Building an external startup is a deeply uncomfortable — albeit necessary — process for corporations. It's supposed to be.

To make that leap of faith, you need to have the confidence that expert conviction is on your side. You need to know that a venture studio with a proven track record in building software startups also thinks it is a good idea and wants to do it with you. Everything that we do as High Alpha Innovation — the speed, the Sprint Weeks, the business design, leveraging our ecosystem — is important to us, but only because it has resulted in a track record that gives our corporate partners confidence.

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