Telefónica’s internal innovation is complemented by our open innovation strategy, which arises from the need to look outwards to attract the talent and emerging technologies that we identify in startups, with the aim of incorporating them into the company to innovate better and faster.
The Open Innovation team acts as a link between Telefónica and the entrepreneurial ecosystem, keeping us up to date with what is happening around us and identifying the most brilliant and disruptive projects in the startup environment in order to support them and incorporate them into our catalogue of services and our own internal processes.
As pioneers in corporate innovation, we understand that large companies face a choice: innovate or disappear. We believe that corporations are capable of reinventing themselves by working hand in hand with entrepreneurs, helping them to scale their projects. In this way, we can identify trends, collaborate and create ecosystems that generate synergies to complete the company’s digital transformation processes.
In 2006 we launched our first vehicle, Telefónica Ventures. Since then, we have maintained our unwavering commitment to attracting innovation to our company through collaboration with entrepreneurs around the world. Wayra and Open Future are Telefónica’s other two vehicles for innovation.
During all these years, we have generated an ecosystem with different initiatives that cover all phases of entrepreneurship; a complete and unique interface between entrepreneurs; and a network of more than 40 partners, made up of large companies, governments and other relevant agents, that allow us to collaborate together and obtain mutual benefits. In addition, we are present in 10 countries through our 40+ hubs. Of the more than 1,000 startups invested, 550 are currently part of our portfolio and 192 work with Telefónica. In total we have invested €221 million: €66 million from Wayra and €155 million from Telefónica Ventures.
Today, more than 70 of our startups are worth more than €50M USD, a significant figure that shows that we are helping them to grow and, more importantly, to attract investors. Our startups have raised €3.5 billion, more than 10 times than what we have invested in them.