At Unilever we want to meet the very best scaleups and startups operating in the world of social commerce.
We recognise the huge strategic importance of social commerce and want to further advance our capabilities to give us a unique edge. Through a pitch competition, we are looking to partner with the very best scaleups and startups operating in the world of social commerce.
Our Beauty & Personal Care business is a €20 billion division, operating some of the world’s most loved brands such as Dove, Axe, TRESemmé and Love Beauty & Planet. This competition will be spearheaded by our Beauty & Personal Care President, Sunny Jain, and his leadership team.
We want to pioneer across four Social Commerce models:
Irrespective of the social commerce model we’re using, there are common challenges we think could be solved or managed differently. Here are a few areas where we see potential to optimise (download brief for more details)
- Influencer management
- Influencer performance tracking and optimisation
- Regional warehousing, logistics & fulfilment specialist to enable last mile delivery and order management
- Technology to enhance the shopper experience and real-time conversion
Where we’ll use these and our assessment criteria
In essence, we’d love to hear from scaleups or startups that are rocking it in social commerce. We will be considering applicants against any one or more of the following categories, businesses that can:
- Support our Core Brands: where we don’t have a DTC capability and infrastructure
- Support our DTC Brands: where we can help accelerate growth
- Bring radical Horizon 2 Innovations: the unknown unknowns to keep us ahead of the competition
- Support our People and Planet Positive mission: solutions to help end discrimination in beauty and champion inclusion or help reduce environmental impact via social commerce
What we’re looking for in our scaleups and startups collaboration:
- Help us to move fast and with impact (e.g., plug and play solutions, maximise sales conversions, optimise touchpoints, increase consumer understanding)
- Bring ease and simplicity (e.g., create a seamless and wonderful consumer experience or the creation of assets and campaigns)
- Support our key markets (e.g., ability to deliver in one or more of our key markets of USA, India, China, UK, Brazil and Indonesia)
- Have a killer USP (e.g., have genuine differentiation in what you do)
- Traction (e.g., evidence that you can do what you say you can do - either as an early startup or pre-IPO scaleup)
If you want an opportunity to start a conversation, meet our senior leadership and business operators and potentially partner with us, the key steps are:
|Submissions Open||28 Sept, Tues|
|Unilever Open Forum (we present our ask and Q&A)||6 Oct Wed (10:00 and 16:00 BST)|
|Submissions Close||19 Oct, Tue (23:59 BST)|
|Shortlist Announced||3 Nov, Wed|
|Virtual Live Pitch Competition (for the six best aligned)||18 Nov, Thurs|
Have a question?
Our aim is to find, and partner with startups and scaleups that will work with us to further advance our capabilities and to give us a unique edge in social commerce.
We are looking to engage everyone from late stage (pre-IPO) scaleups through to seed startups. While we prefer to work with established startups and scaleups, we know that great innovation usually starts small, so we’d love to hear from you regardless of where you are on your journey.
Open application process will run from September 28th to October 19th at midnight (BST).
Our team will be available on an Open Forum taking place on October 6th to answer any questions you might have and provide further context and guidance around the ask. Please submit your questions ahead of time via the F6S portal
We will be hosting two sessions:
- Morning session: 10AM BST
- Afternoon session: 16:00 BST
Shortlist will be announced on November 3rd and 6-8 selected companies will be pitching to our senior leadership and our Beauty & Personal Care community on November 18th, when the winner will be announced.
The application process will close on October 19th at midnight and all candidates can expect to hear back from us no later than November 3rd. Due to the number of applications we receive, we sadly won’t be able to provide feedback to everyone.