Societe Generale is to support the development of up to 30 startups that have emerged from an internal intrapreneurship programme that kicked off in 2017.
The Internal Startup Call invited employees from across the bank's global network to input new ideas to a dedicated online platform, in the process generating 15000 logins and 600 innovation ideas.
In February 2018, pre-selected teams pitched in front of members of the group’s management committee with the winners moving to a six-month incubation phase at external accelerators.
The bank says some thirty startups have confirmed their potential and will now enter a development phase as projects within the Group’s Business and Service Units, or will be capitalised under Societe Generale Ventures, the Group’s investment fund dedicated to internal and external startups. A dozen startups are extended for an incubation period of a further 3-6 months.
As well as inspiring internal innovation, the programme also revealed the need for increased organisational agility within the bank to speed up the introduction of new ideas. The lessons learned have been transcribed to a new platform, dubbed ISC Explorer, which will be shared with employees across the bank.
Frédéric Oudéa, chief executive officer, says: “After first phase of our digital transformation that has enabled us to acquire make significant progress in all our business lines and functions, we are now to accelerate the deployment of our technological solutions by industrialising our processes and by drawing on our technological and cultural maturity."
A similar strategy to promote internal innovation is being supported by neighbouring BNP Paribas, which has opened a company lab 100% dedicated to intrapreneuerial ideas from teams within the bank. This year, the lab worked its way through 150 application before settling on 12 projects, which will undergo a four-month acceleration effort with the aim of finding business sponsors and securing financing.