Ten years ago, two fellow co-founders and I set up a digital experience company from the bottom of a North London pub. Our vision was to help global enterprises move away from paper-based products, services and processes, and towards user-driven digital experiences.
Silicon Valley may have been booming, but the proposition was still relatively niche here in the UK. Most enterprises were just emerging from the 2008 financial crisis, and many were characterised by bureaucracy and red tape – not the optimum environment for digital innovation.
But we bucked conventional wisdom, and proved that large enterprises could innovate at scale. We grew a great team, moved out of the pub and into a shiny office, and delivered hundreds of digital propositions that serve millions of users today.
THE WORLD CHANGED
In the decade since, some major shifts have taken place. The average company’s life expectancy has dropped to just under 10 years; household names have vanished from the high street; trust in institutions has reached an all-time low.
At the same time, whole industries have been reborn. A new generation of outsiders has launched purpose-led ventures into the global economy, powered by intuitive, adaptable, easy-access platforms. Many have fallen by the wayside, but the most successful have reaped disproportionate returns.
For the incumbents, it’s become clear that finding new efficiencies in old processes is not enough. Re-thinking, rebuilding and reinventing are required. But how?
A NEW MISSION
We believe partnership is the answer. The scale, brand equity and industry-expertise of the enterprise, combined with the digital-first, agile mindset of the startup, is an ideal model for today’s economy. We started arketyp to facilitate such partnerships.
The UK early-stage ventures space is already the second largest outside the Valley, but there’s a lack of leadership from a digital background. We aim to change this.
We’re here to support founders, across sectors and industries, with the investment and expertise they need to define their narrative and growth strategy, and plug them into the enterprise network. And we’ll support enterprise leaders and corporate ventures, by connecting them to a rich eco-system of innovative, digital startups.
Watch this space for news on some exciting new projects – and insights and explorations into the future of work, industry and culture in the UK.
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