Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Kellogg seeks innovation via startups

Without sounding like a broken record, the key to the resurgence of cereal is innovation. We have also seen that much of that innovation is coming from small companies, eager to try new things, but often without the adequate resources to do so. The large companies are often too entrenched in their ways and culture to really effect creative change.

Silicon Valley has long been the hotbed for tech innovation, fueled by venture capitalists investing in the wild (and sometimes crazy) ideas of entrepreneurs. The cereal industry, desperately needing an injection of life, is now trying the same thing. Last fall we indicated that General Mills launched 301 INC to do just that. Not to be outdone, Kellogg is the latest to join the trend.

Kellogg recently announced the formation of eighteen94 capital (1894) to "to make minority investments in companies pursuing next-generation innovation, bolstering access to cutting-edge ideas and trends. The investment mandate includes start-up businesses pioneering new ingredients, foods, packaging, and enabling technology." Approximately $100 million will be invested.

To be fair, 1894 is not just about cereal, but food innovation more broadly. But, hopefully some of this rub off on a cereal industry needing some fresh ideas

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