Nestle focuses on healthy living with The Next Big Thing pitch initiative

Nestle switches focus to healthy living with The Next Big Thing pitch initiative

Nestle is seeking to shed its reputation for confectionery and convenience food by sponsoring a $50k hunt for start-ups which hold promise for enhancing people’s quality of life and encouraging healthy living.

Backed in partnership with McCann the pair will sponsor The Next Big Thing pitch competition running at ad:tech London on 29 and 30 November, during which tech startups will compete to win a $50k pilot.

Nestle will employ its Henri@Nestle open innovation platform to help bring about a marriage of external innovators with the transnational food and drinks giant’s own nutrition experts.

15 startups will be selected to run in heats during the two-day event, with three winners and one wildcard entrant going head-to-head for the closing final; from which just one startup will claim the five figure cheque.

Gerardo Mazzeo, global innovation director for Nestlé said: “We launched HENRi@Nestlé in 2016 with the ambition to work with the most creative and innovative startups on projects that will make a real difference. We’ve already had six great projects, and partnering with ad:tech and The Next Big Thing is an important part of our strategy as we continue to build HENRi and look to find more tech pioneers.”

Tech firms have until 29 September to register for The Next Big Thing initiative in the hope of standing shoulder to shoulder with past winners Fluid Ads, Relative Insight, Seenit and Avocarrot.

Nestle has previously vowed to slash sugar content in its confectionery by a tenth as it seeks to see off a threatened UK 'sugar tax'.

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