- The award "Europe's Corporate Startup Stars" 2017 was conferred to METRO AG's innovative project METROpolitan
- The prize recognises companies that successfully support promising startups
- In the framework of the METROpolitan programme, 500 restaurants in five European metropolises test digital solutions developed by startups
METRO AG received the award "Europe's Corporate Startup Stars 2017" for its commitment to promoting startups. For the second time, the startup consultants from "Mind the Bridge", an innovation advisory services company, together with the innovation foundation Nesta present this award under the European Commission’s initiative "Start-up Europe Partnership". In the category “Open Innovation: Innovative Approaches”, it honours the project METROpolitan for its innovative concept.
In the framework of the pilot project METROpolitan, 500 restaurants in Berlin, Milan, Paris, Barcelona and Vienna test digital solutions developed by startups regarding their suitability for everyday use. Based on the results the startups then optimise their products further. If the digital tools successfully pass the METROpolitan program they can become part of a further rollout and can be provided to a larger number of METRO’s customer. The wholesale and food specialist last week launched his activities regarding the international digitalisation of the hospitality sector. The vast majority of the gastronomes’ basically do not use any digital solutions. In addition to the free digital tools METRO also offers advice and support for all questions relating to the tools and facilitates dialogue, knowledge sharing and community building for independent restaurant businesses via a platform.
What makes the award "Europe’s Corporate Startup Stars" so special is that the entrants cannot apply for participation. Instead, they are nominated by startups or selected by the award organisers.
"The METROpolitan programme is an effective tool that enables us to evaluate digital solutions from the customer's perspective", says Tim Kruppe, Director Digital Projects of HORECA.digital, the digital unit of METRO. "The pilots proof that digital solutions improve the operational business of the gastronomes significantly. For example, we noticed an increase of around 10 percent in sales and that customers can save from one to three hours per day. But not every solution is valued equally well by the gastronomes. We share the feedback and insights with the innovators. This enables them to better understand the needs of the hospitality sector." 52 percent of European corporations support startups in the form of Accelerator programs – this is one of the results of the new research paper ("Open Innovation in Europe: a Snapshot of 2017 SEP Europe's Corporate Start-up Stars") presented in the framework of the award ceremony.