How KITE Is Leading The Corporate Innovation Conversation At SXSW 2017

March 2nd, 2017

It must be March. Hundreds of global corporations and startups are about to converge in Austin at SXSW Interactive for their annual mashup of creativity, innovation, possibility…and BBQ. For large companies, this is an opportunity to consider the art of the possible, explore new trends that could elevate or disrupt their businesses, and find potential partners to start transforming their businesses in ways both large and small (note: our SXSW 2017 startups & emerging tech companies report will help).

This dynamic, sometimes chaotic, environment is overwhelming for some. For KITE, this is our comfort zone. We exist to learn in these environments, and to help the right enterprises and startups find each other, sometimes against all odds, to address critical business challenges and to drive growth on both sides.

For the third year, we will be in the SXSW Startup Village, this time on Saturday, March 11, presenting a half-day of programming focused on startup innovation for enterprises. We have secured top leaders from entertainment, apparel/retail, financial services, insurance and consumer goods, who will share their experiences and insights on innovation strategy and startup partnerships. This is a rare opportunity for corporate innovators to meet and learn from one another. In addition, we’ll reveal findings from our inaugural State of Startup Innovation survey, providing benchmarks for where these efforts stand today.

Immediately after our morning programming, we’ll head over to the Visa Everywhere Lounge, where we’re powering the startup pitch event for Visa’s 3rd Annual Everywhere Initiative. This year, it’s a lineup of female founders (more info below).

Please join us at the Hilton Austin Downtown, Salon E, from 9:30am to 1:30pm on Saturday, March 11 (session details below). You can follow our activities: @getKITE & #KITESXSW.

Let’s meet in Austin. Ping to set up a time and to share your plans.


Our three sessions kick off at 9:30am on Saturday, March 11 at the Hilton Austin Downtown (500 E. 4th St), Salon E

Session 1: End FOMO: Create Your Startup Innovation Playbook
9:30am to 10:30am on 3/11, Hilton Salon E

Greg Reed, VP Technology Partnerships, Universal Pictures [@gregpreed]
Jenna Spivak Evans, US eCommerce Innovation & Digital Capabilities Lead, Unilever [@jbspiv]
Dominic Venturo, EVP and Chief Innovation Officer, U.S. Bank [@innov8tr]

Mark Silva, Founder & CEO, KITE [@marksilva]

The Global 2000 must address tech disruption in all areas of their businesses to acquire growth and new models. These giants spend enormous resources against geopolitical and cyber threats, as well as traditional competitors. Now, they are investing similarly in new technologies to avoid disruptive impact and unlock value creation. We’ve seen Walmart, GM and Unilever invest billions in startup innovation, using partnerships, investments and acquisitions to drive growth. Isn’t it time for you to define your approach? Executives that have constructed and implemented their startup innovation playbooks will share insights.

Session 2: How Startup Innovation Transforms Big Business
11am to 12pm on 3/11, Hilton Salon E

Fireside chat with
Shiv Singh, SVP Innovation & Strategic Partnerships, Visa [@shivsingh]

Interviewed by
Evangelos Simoudis, Founder and Managing Director, Synapse Partners [@esimoudis]

The Visa Everywhere Initiative (VEI) began like a startup Minimum Viable Product with a simple, powerful idea: startups help solve business challenges in new ways. VEI quickly grew from the MVP “Demo Day”-style event at SXSW 2015 to a global program that has launched startup partnerships touching nearly every part of its business. Working with the startup ecosystem is evolving and amplifying the best of Visa’s innovation brand and culture in line with its highest strategic priorities. SVP Shiv Singh, VEI’s mastermind and founder, opens up about the platform’s evolution, effects on Visa and what other Global 2000 companies can learn from the Visa experience.

Session 3: Inside the Deal: The Art of Startup Partnerships
12:30pm to 1:30pm on 3/11, Hilton Salon E

Venky Balakrishnan Iyer, Global Vice President – FUTURES, Diageo
Amanda Gallagher, Corporate Vice President – Innovation, New York Life [@The_AGall]
Katharine Reinhold, Senior Manager – Digital Innovation, adidas

Tarah Feinberg, CMO, KITE [@tarahFO]

Enterprises across various industries are turning to startups for solutions to business problems and growth opportunities. Often, the relationship begins with a pilot program that, once proven, is scaled across the enterprise. Case studies tell you the results of such partnerships (e.g,. millions in new revenue), but rarely reveal why it worked. How did the company determine whether the startup was a cultural fit? What were the key factors in moving from discussion to implementation? How did they set KPIs? In this discussion with corporate leaders, speakers will unpack their successful partnerships and key insights so that you can quickly deploy those learnings in your organization.


In this KITE-powered event, five female-led startups pitch Visa executives how they can build on one or more of Visa’s APIs to create a more simple, seamless and powerful commerce experience.

WHEN: Saturday, March 11
WHERE: Visa Everywhere Lounge (908 East 5th St at San Marcos St).

Please address any questions or inquiries about KITE’s programming to:
Kirin Kalia
Director of Communications, KITE