Young entrepreneurs cook up the future with digital innovation

  • Posted on July 18, 2018
  • Estimated reading time 3 minutes
digital entrepreneurship

I was recently very fortunate to attend the Junior Achievement (JA) Europe Enterprise Challenge event in Riga, Latvia, the culmination of a year-long programme where students have the opportunity to experience running a business from the bottom up. This was an award ceremony with a difference— the average age of participating team members was just 20 years old. But you would not have known this based on the calibre of business ideas presented. It was such an inspirational event. From the students’ creativity and leadership, to the overall quality and presentation of the ideas and business plans, everything was just outstanding.

The Executive team at Avanade is proud to partner with JA to enable young people globally to realize their potential through technology. We always say at Avanade that digital innovation is in our DNA, which is why partnering with JA and the Enterprise Challenge in particular, is a perfect alignment of our skills and our mission, which is to empower young people to realize their potential through our people and what we know best, digital innovation. The Enterprise Challenge intends to prepare young people to become tomorrow’s entrepreneurs, CEOs and business leaders.

Avanade sponsored the Digital Innovation Award which was awarded to the team representing France, Cook Me Up. This dynamic young team was judged by myself and my colleagues Matt Joe, Avanade CTIO, Caroline Fanning, Avanade Europe HR Lead, and Jens Boegh-Nielsen, Avanade Nordic Region Lead. We selected the Cook Me Up team for their ability to best demonstrate the use of digital innovation, business potential and business sustainability as well as their ability to present a compelling story. In addition to designing an excellent business plan, the team demonstrated the most creative use of digital innovations like mobility, collaboration tools and cloud-based technology in their business concept.

The Cook Me Up team developed a unique culinary concept with the tagline “1 Product, 3 Dishes, 1000 Flavours”, an innovative way to display gourmet food at the pace of fast food; enabling customers to enjoy high quality food delivered directly to their home. The concept also features an interactive experience which allows customers to curate their meals through an innovative mobile app, “Click & Sit,” drastically reducing wait time at restaurants and delivering a personalized service, leading to greater customer satisfaction. The judges felt that this simple idea demonstrated how digital innovation can be used to reinvent and disrupt a traditional analogue business.

I look forward to welcoming team Cook Me Up to Avanade’s London headquarters in September, where they’ll get to meet and spend some time with our European leadership team and visit our digital studio. I am sure we’ll be hearing a lot more from this very entrepreneurial young team in the future and we’re excited to continue encouraging young people to learn and grow through digital innovation.

Learn more about corporate citizenship at Avanade and watch the 2018 Junior Achievement (JA) Europe Enterprise Challenge highlight reel, below.

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