“One of the key challenges that start-ups face in the sustainability space is people’s lack of acceptance to change. PepsiCo’s Greenhouse Accelerator Program is a great example of combining start-up agility with MNC expertise to drive positive impact.”
The MENA region is becoming more aware of what start-ups can bring to the table. Governments, multinationals, and startups are recognizing shared strengths and finding ways to fill innovation gaps collectively. In the last few years, we’ve seen significant growth in startups, in terms of investor adoption and expansions.
Okeanos is a startup focused on innovation that can reduce CO2 emissions and minimize plastic footprint. Through education and widespread adoption of ‘Made From Stone’ technology, we can make a real difference. Made From Stone is a new category of packaging technology designed to dramatically reduce the overall plastic content and the carbon footprint of single-use items through the introduction of calcium carbonate, a naturally abundant & renewable substance which makes up 4% of the earth’s crust.
We applied to the Greenhouse Accelerator Program: MENA edition in a bid to overcome recurring challenges, and benefit from the expertise of a multinational company with decades of experience in the F&B sector. One of the key challenges that startups face in the sustainability space is people’s lack of acceptance to change. We struggle with speculation and resistance without having the chance to showcase the potential of our technology. We also know we’re not the only ones.
Collaboration between MNCs and startups can help fill these gaps. Startups tend to be very agile, disruptive, less risk-averse, and focused on specific solutions. On the other hand, MNCs have the expertise running P&Ls, building strategies, and access to a wide network and resources. The Greenhouse Accelerator Program is a great example of combining strengths for mutual benefit. When there are specific goals to achieve, MNCs should have startups front of mind. We can work hand-in-hand, filling each other’s gaps, finding synergies, and aligning our strengths to overcome hurdles.
We need to do more to build a healthier planet for ourselves and our future generations, and a small step in that direction is finding like-minded partners who can work towards a shared goal.
Okeanos Middle East President