Multi-Channel Corporate Venturing

A Build, Partner, Buy approach for corporate leaders in the new decade

Corporate Venturing, which in this paper refers to corporate capital allocations to internal and external startups, has the potential to deliver outsized financial and strategic benefits. When approaching Build, Partner or Buy decisions for new ventures, companies should consider seven distinct Corporate Venturing channels.

Corporate Venturing as a structured response to disruption

Corporate Venturing, described as any investment from a corporation to Build, Partner with, or Buy new businesses, finds new sources of entrepreneurship and innovation from inside and outside the company. Common Corporate Venturing channels include innovation labs that support rapid prototyping, dedicated corporate venture building units, incubators and accelerators for growing pre-seed and early-stage internal and external startups, institutional partnerships in the startup ecosystem, services from startups, corporate venture capital investments, and M&A divisions acquiring entire startup companies.


Practitioners are experiencing benefits, but are not perfectly positioned for success

According to new Deloitte survey results, most corporate leaders are confident in their abilities to leverage disruptive technologies through Corporate Venturing channels. However, respondent insights coupled with first-hand experiences and discussions with industry experts point to potential pitfalls in Corporate Venturing efficacy and highlight specific areas for improvement.


Best practices in Corporate Venturing

A successful Corporate Venturing strategy should extend from the overarching corporate strategy and align at the board level for a coordinated and synergistic portfolio of Corporate Venturing channels and individual ventures. After identifying new business requirements and pairing them with actual concepts or concrete solutions, ventures can be prioritized against pre-defined criteria and pursued via Build, Partner or Buy venturing channels.


Operationalizing Corporate Venturing

Three guiding principles support successful Corporate Venturing implementation: establishing a centralized budget to harmonize venturing efforts, defining strict and transparent accountability standards for investments into new ventures, and enabling a robust company culture that empowers venturing teams to deliver proven, scalable solutions.