- Anheuser-Busch is looking to bring "anyone with a passion for building a more sustainable future" together at its recently announced 100+ Accelerator program to fix global sustainability issues.
- The 10 challenges — from responsible sourcing to closed loops or green logistics — await applicants, who can submit their solutions to the program by mid-September. Successful applications will receive support from Anheuser-Busch in the form of funding, networking and mentorship.
- The company said the new annual accelerator will include a pilot project by each startup and a "structured curriculum" to integrate solutions with a corporate partner and plan for scale.
The action in business these days is fast, agile and local. Maker spaces and business incubators, fueled by owners and employees shunning the cubical culture, are hubs of activity and many colleges are joining the entrepreneurial push with new majors and business plan competitions. The success of organizations including MassChallenge, Greentown Labs and MIT $100K point toward the future of business.
Anheuser-Busch is tapping into the momentum with their 100+ Accelerator program, looking for innovators, scientists and entrepreneurs to try to solve a number of sustainability issues to benefit their company, the beverage industry and beyond.
This is good for Anheuser-Busch as well as the applicants. The program provides for some investment, coaching and networking for participants. And it never hurts for startups to have the logo of an iconic brand included in their PowerPoint when seeking angel investors, or building customer and supplier relationships.
A number of the issues in the sustainability challenge are supply chain related. Smart agriculture, green logistics, waste management, and other sustainable challenges could show a positive near-term effort in managing the global supply chain. These types of challenges work to jump-start, call attention to, and accelerate the development of technologies and ideas that may have had a hard time seeing the light of day.
The program could also be a roadmap for other companies to tap into the large and building ecosystem of entrepreneurs, micro-businesses and start-ups. Lack of a renowned brand no longer prohibits smart people get engaged and work on large problem with a willingness to reach out with a shared value proposition where everyone can benefit.