19/10/23 11:43

Corporate news

Orange Belgium strengthens its collaboration with the Belgian startup ecosystem and tech talents thanks to Orange Ventures

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Orange Belgium aims to become the preferred tech & telco employer in Belgium, as a key pillar of its ‘Lead the Future’ strategy. To strengthen this ambition, the operator welcomes Orange Ventures, Orange’s venture capital investment subsidiary, to boost its support for tech talents and the local tech ecosystem in Belgium. With € 350 million assets under management, Orange Ventures increases its activity in Belgium. Out of 25 files reviewed, 8 start-ups pitched their solution in front of Orange Ventures and investors partners. In case of fund raising, Orange Ventures could help them in gaining access to the Orange Group's open innovation ecosystem, technological and commercial expertise.

Orange Ventures is dedicated to investing in innovative startups in Orange’s strategic fields of interest and beyond. With € 350 million assets under management, Orange Ventures is one of the top corporate ventures in Europe with an investment strategy focused on helping future global tech champions, fostering innovation, and supporting new sustainable and responsible business models.

Orange Belgium is now welcoming Orange Ventures in Belgium. This marks a new milestone in the operator’s ‘Lead the Future’ strategy with the ambition to become the preferred tech and telco employer, developing tech talents through internal learning programs and external partnerships.

Why in Belgium?

Orange Ventures aims to increase its presence in European countries where Orange is active. The arrival of Orange Ventures in Belgium is an opportunity for the fund to identify and finance future global champions and help them scale outside of Belgium with a focus on mature companies with hyper growth potential in various fields: Network & IT, B2B SaaS, Data, AI, Cybersecurity, Fintech, eHealth, Industry 4.0, Content, Marketplaces, and more. Orange Ventures also invests in early-stage impact startups in climatech, caretech, circular economy and inclusion. The case of Belgium is particularly interesting because Orange Belgium has a strong presence in the tech ecosystem especially thanks to the Orange Fab BeLux startup accelerator program, and the 5G Labs.

Orange Fab, present in 20 countries around the world, and Orange Ventures work hand in hand, studying the market and start-ups together. Both programs aim to contribute actively to the growth of Belgian startups and create value by generating links and implementing partnerships with the Orange ecosystem. Orange Ventures makes the final investment decision, processes investments, and follows the company’s governance. By supporting the development of Orange Ventures in Belgium, Orange Belgium is hoping to see the first venture capital investments flowing into startups selected by Orange Fab.

Startups wishing to contact the Orange Ventures investment team can do so via Orange Fab or directly via the Orange Ventures website.

An effective and win-win partnership

The new step of this collaboration started with a pitching session organized in Orange Belgium’s HQ. 8 start-ups answering Orange Ventures’ criteria and scouted by Orange Fab BeLux presented their solution to potential investors. Orange Belgium and Orange Ventures hope this event will lead to future investments and consolidate the support Orange Belgium is bringing to local startups.

"Through this collaboration, we are in fact demonstrating what 'Open Innovation' is all about. It is a unique approach to support startups and create win-win partnerships where corporates harness innovation from startups and startups access big customers and expertise. As Orange Belgium aims to be the preferred tech and telco employer in Belgium, developing tech talents through internal programs and external partnerships, Orange Ventures increasing its activity in Belgium is a new milestone in our Lead the Future strategy.”, explains Werner De Laet, Chief Enterprise & Innovation Officer at Orange Belgium.

What makes Orange Ventures different as a Venture Capital is the business added value we bring to our startups through the collaboration we can initiate with Orange Group. The Orange Ventures operating partners help startups and Orange work together. It is a huge strength for portfolio companies. This effectively solves one of the biggest obstacles in this kind of collaboration. We bridge the gap between two culturally different sides. We act as a guide.” - Mathieu de La Rochefoucauld, Managing Partner at Orange Ventures.

About Orange Ventures

With a 350 million euros allocation, Orange Ventures is dedicated to investments in innovative startups in areas of strategic interest of Orange (Network & cloud, Digital transformation, Cybersecurity and Fintech) and beyond (E-health, Content, Gaming & VR, B2C & Market places). With its Orange Ventures Impact Orange Ventures also deploys initiatives dedicated to the Africa and Middle East region. Supported by the Orange group, and made up of a team of 20 people, Orange Ventures offers startups in which it invests access to the Group's expertise and the possibility of setting up synergies with its many business units and its 287 million customers on 31 December 2022 in 26 countries.

For more information, visit ventures.orange.com or follow us on Twitter @Orange_Ventures.