SOFOFA HUB launches the first associative Venture Client and starts a search for technological solutions to four challenges of large companies

Published on Friday, 15 July 2022

Through the SOFOFA Hub Venture Client program, six industry-leading companies have committed to accelerating innovation by scaling up technology-based startups that focus on the circular economy, supply chain optimization, energy future, and materials innovation.

The circular economy and climate change have been core areas of focus for the Sofofa Hub, which seeks to foster a collaborative business culture at a time of increasing awareness in the country about the need for a new model of resilient, sustainable, and collective growth. In recognition of the circular economy model's importance for sustainable development, Sofofa has created the program "Industrial Symbiosis for the Circular Economy," the Circular Economy Committee for Mining, and the Pacific Alliance Hub Network.

Today, the new Venture Client initiative is being promoted along with Agrosuper, CCU, CMPC, ENEL Chile, Molymet, and PuCobre, six of the country's leading food companies, energy, forestry, and mining sectors. The initiative's main objective is to significantly reduce the time required to validate and scale technological solutions and eliminate many barriers entrepreneurs face when establishing a relationship with a large company.

The program aims at science and technology entrepreneurs with a proven product or service that addresses challenges and can help accelerate the circular economy, optimize the supply chain, develop future energy solutions and innovate with materials.

The four challenges are already published on the program's website

1.    Monitoring and traceability of cables for urban mining

2.    Water scarcity and efficiency in animal husbandry processes and processing plants.

3.    Management and valorization of animal production by-products

4.    Debris separation and valorization

Unlike other open innovation initiatives, the program focuses on facilitating the stages of scaling and adoption of the solutions in the company. "The Venture Client model is based on collaboration and learning among the Hub's partner companies to enhance the work with entrepreneurs," says Alan García, executive director of SOFOFA Hub. "We have designed a process that seeks to set a standard of good practices that accelerates the validation and scaling process and, in this way, contributes to the scaling of ventures in Chile."

Growth without sacrificing business ownership

The program operates through six-month call cycles in which the companies in the alliance post challenges on the program's website. SOFOFA Hub then coordinates the search and selection of solutions, co-designing proofs of concept (or pilots) and scaling.

"Entrepreneurs that participate in the initiative will have the chance to win an important client that could enhance their reputation and help them finance growth, without ceding part of the ownership of their business," said García. 


He adds that entrepreneurs will have "the opportunity to promote their solution to companies in the alliance, using the platform as a showcase in the event of their solution being selected."


The launch event can be viewed on demand at the following link: