In our ‘Inspiring small businesses’ series, we share and celebrate great stories from fellow small business owners who started and run their own business. By bringing you closer to these inspiring businesses we hope that you find motivation, tips, and ideas for building yours.
Our next inspiring business is Forward Fooding – the world’s first collaborative platform for corporates and startups in the food and beverage industry and the story behind it shared by its founder and CEO Alessio D’Antino.
What is it that you do?
Headquartered at Huckletree West in London, we run a global network of entrepreneurs powered by entrepreneurs, that provides the necessary support and velocity to enable meaningful collaborations and partnerships between established food organisations, corporate executives and startups.
Our goal is to create mutually beneficial corporate startup collaborations and develop true innovation in the Food and FoodTech industry.
What’s the story behind your business?
We believe entrepreneurship can make a difference in solving some of the biggest issues that are affecting our current food system. That’s why I founded Forward Fooding, with the goal of creating a food revolution and leveraging entrepreneurship and tech to improve the quality and the sustainability of food available for consumers.
I am passionate about fostering the food innovation of the future. By connecting entrepreneurs with the most relevant partners for their ventures, especially corporate partners, we help the next generation of business leaders to think more entrepreneurially and act fast to adapt to today’s ever-changing business environment.
At Forward Fooding, we combine entrepreneurial acumen and tech expertise with corporate experience to help their clients to build more sustainable businesses and remain competitive in the long haul. Forward Fooding‘s history is deeply rooted in innovation, tech, and entrepreneurship since its Silicon Valley launch in 2014, which we find is our ‘secret sauce’ for long-lasting business success.
Since our earliest days, Forward Fooding has been working with medium and large multinational companies and SMEs, with projects ranging from innovation strategy through to implementation; enabling lasting impact and realising future innovation workstreams for their clients, partners, and affiliates.
What inspired you to start your own business?
I guess it was a combination of different elements. On the one hand, the frustration I developed by working in innovation within corporates combined with the lack of meaningful products within their innovation agenda/pipeline and the disconnect with what consumers were seeking.
On the other hand, when I came across a number of entrepreneurs in food and foodtech it became evident to me that a consumer-centric approach to innovation was the way forward.
I think I had my ‘epiphany’ when I saw an opportunity to combine the best of both worlds (agility/relevance of startups to innovate and expertise of corporates to scale innovation) and doing our share to foster food innovation, as well as contributing to redesigning our food system, one collaboration at the time.
What is the most difficult aspect of running your own business?
I think it is by far hiring the right people
What is the best thing about running your own business?
Fostering my curiosity for anything food/innovation related while creating jobs and contributing to creating a brighter future of food.