Nestlé S.A., Switzerland, created the Nestlé R&D Accelerator based in Lausanne, Switzerland. The accelerator brings together Nestlé scientists, students and start-ups to advance science and technology to accelerate the development of innovative products and systems. Internal, external or mixed teams are eligible to use dedicated hot desks at the accelerator over a defined period of time, and receive access to Nestlé's R&D expertise and infrastructure, including shared labs, kitchens, bench-scale and pilot-scale equipment. The accelerator will be operational by the end of 2019.
The accelerator is part of Nestlé's global R&D network and located at Nestlé Research, which employs around 800 people in Lausanne. This ecosystem includes several units of Nestlé's R&D organization, leading academic institutions such as the Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL) and Zurich (ETHZ) and the Swiss Hospitality Management School in Lausanne (EHL) as well as a wide range of innovation partners, suppliers and start-ups.
"We have taken a number of steps to accelerate innovation, including our enhanced prototyping capabilities and the funding of fast-track projects,” says Stefan Palzer, chief technology officer. “With the Nestlé R&D Accelerator and its proximity to our R&D and business teams, we will bring open innovation to a new level. Combining our internal expertise and the deep knowledge of our academic and industrial partners with the external entrepreneurial creativity is a unique approach and will create an innovation powerhouse. It will accelerate the translation of innovative ideas and concepts into tangible prototypes and products."