Alaian is a great open innovation initiative with non-competing telcos

Interview to Marie-José van den Boomgaard, Liaison Manager Scaleups at KPN

We have asked Marie-José van den Boomgaard, Liason Manager Scaleups at KPN about Alaian and the mutual opportunities it will bring to both KPN and the alliance itself.

This what she told us:

What does Alaian mean to you?

In a nutshell, Allaian means inspiration. 

At KPN we beleive in open innovation and Alaian is a great open innovation initiative with non-competing telcos, to share information on how to innovate and what are the best scaleups to cooperate with in order to add value to our clients.

The sessions proof to be really open, well prepared and extremely useful. Finally, I think jointly we can offer a lot of benefits like access to a huge number of customers, expertise, funding and much more to the scaleups that will join our challenges, so that we can jointly create game changers for our customers. Love to work on it.

What does your telco contribute to the overall alliance?

KPN will contribute on several elements, like access to our Dutch, highly digital customers, expertise from our teams as well as from our highly rated colleagues, participation in our 5G field labs, access to our venture capital, promotion possibilities and much more.

We have a proven track record in working with scaleups by over 300 cooperations since end of 2015 and we are as well valued by winning a top position as the most startup friendly corporate for several years awarded by the International Chamber of Commerce. We love innovation and we love scaleups.

Highlight a key telco technology for you today

At KPN we focus on cooperating in the field of 5G like smart industry, logistics, robotics and drones, hybrid converged working, data and analytics solutions, cybersecurity, media and entertainment and many more.

All on the domains of consumer and business customers, as long as it adds value to our customers or improves our internal processes. By cooperating with the Alaian partners, we can make the footprint of impact even bigger.

Why is it so important to innovate, and what role does innovation plays in your company?

Technology goes fast and is a constant change that can offer a wide variety of new chances. Innovation is essential to capture those chances, to reinvent new business models and offer the best value we can to our customers. We have three teams dedicated on innovation and working with scaleup, because we believe that combining strengths of a big corporate with those of the agile scaleups will speedup success and increase potential impact.

What does an alliance like this offer the entrepreneurial ecosystem?

Not only is funnier to work in a great entrepreneurial ecosystem, but it is essential as well to succeed in innovation with impact. An ecosystem attitude is about having open doors, creating win-win possibilities, sharing and caring and jointly create impact.

We did so at KPN from the start by, for example, opening our doors and access to our board members and managers on a quarterly basis during the well known (in Holland) KPN Scaleup Afternoon, that we organize for the 23th time on the 2nd of June. Expanding our ecosystem to the countries of our valued Alaian partners is a great worldwide opportunity that we fully embrace.

What would you say to startups who want to be part of Allaian?

If you can add value on the topics we formulate challenges on, please do participate. Bring in your best but transparent story and explore how we can create win-win possibilities, for you as a scaleup, for our worldwide customer base as well as for the Alaian partners itself. We are a network of professional and experienced partners working with scaleups and create successes and love to have you aboard.


Marie José Van Den Boomgaard

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