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INSEAD & 500 startups partner to uncover how the world's biggest companies deal with the startup revolution

Latest joint report discovered a new reality where the world’s biggest corporations are not as ‘lost’ as people think they are.

Middle East, Asia, Europe
03 February 2016

INSEAD, the business school for the world, and 500 Startups, a global venture capital seed fund and startup accelerator based in Silicon Valley, today jointly announced the release of a new report, ‘#500 Corporations: How do the World’s Biggest Companies Deal with the Startup Revolution?’. The study, co-authored by INSEAD Professor of Global Technology and Innovation Serguei Netessine and Arnaud Bonzom, Director of Corporate Innovation at 500 Startups, focuses on corporate innovation by investigating 500 of the world’s biggest public companies and their practices in terms of Corporate Startup Engagement (CSE).

In the ever-changing business landscape, companies across industries have been challenged by startups. Not only can technology companies be disrupted by a small team of engineers in a garage, the startup phenomenon is also affecting banking, automotive, logistics and fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) industries. To the world, established corporations seem to be adapting slowly, or are they? This report explores the extent to which that is true, and uncovers new ways corporations can engage startups for business excellence.

Some key findings from the report

  • 68% of the top 100 companies from the Forbes Global 500 are engaging with startups.
  • The majority (61.7%) of the Unicorns (private companies valued at US$1 billion or more) mentioned by The Wall Street Journal under The Billion Dollar Startups Club have raised funds from at least one corporate (not including investment firms and banks).
  • The top 100 companies are working with startups two times more intensely than the last 100 companies of the Forbes Global 500.

Discover 8 clear ways to engage with startups
The report’s Swiss Army Knife of Corporate Startup Engagement (CSE):

Who the report is for

  • Corporations exploring ways to engage with startups.
  • Corporations looking to benchmark their practices.
  • Individuals working in corporations who want to get buy in from colleagues to embark on a CSE program.

What it isn’t for

  • How to setup an accelerator or a corporate venture arm.
  • A prescriptive guide for corporations, every corporation has different attitudes and objectives.
  • Printing out many copies. Feel free to share the PDF and save some trees!

Useful links

  1. #500 Corporations: How do the World’s Biggest Companies Deal with the Startup Revolution? to discover the most relevant channels to engage with startups.

About 500 Startups

500 Startups is a global venture capital seed fund and startup accelerator based in Silicon Valley with ~$200M in assets under management. We have invested in a wide variety of technology startups all over the world, currently over 1,400 companies since our inception in 2010. Our team of 100 people manage seed investments in 18 countries and speak over 20 languages. We run accelerator programs in San Francisco & Silicon Valley 4x per year emphasizing internet marketing and customer acquisition, design and user experience, and lean startup practices and metrics. Our Distro team and programs deliver growth marketing and investment for seed-stage companies. Our investment team and mentor network has operational experience at companies such as PayPal, Google, Facebook, YouTube, Yahoo, LinkedIn, Twitter and Apple.

Contacts for press:
Kelsey Cullen
Tel: +1 650 438 1063
Email: [email protected]



As one of the world’s leading and largest graduate business schools, INSEAD brings together people, cultures and ideas to develop responsible leaders who transform business and society. Our research, teaching and partnerships reflect this global perspective and cultural diversity.

With locations in Europe (France), Asia (Singapore), the Middle East (Abu Dhabi), and now North America (San Francisco), INSEAD's business education and research spans four regions. Our 165 renowned Faculty members from 42 countries inspire more than 1,500 degree participants annually in our Master in Management,  MBA, Global Executive MBA, Specialised Master’s degrees (Executive Master in Finance and Executive Master in Change) and PhD programmes. In addition, more than 11,000 executives participate in INSEAD Executive Education programmes each year.

INSEAD continues to conduct cutting-edge research and innovate across all our programmes. We provide business leaders with the knowledge and awareness to operate anywhere. Our core values drive academic excellence and serve the global community as The Business School for the World.


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