Rainmaking + ESG Launch Supply Chain Resilience Accelerator
Rainmaking, one of the world’s leading corporate innovation and venture development firms that create, accelerate and scale new business, has partnered with Enterprise Singapore (ESG), a government agency that champions enterprise development, to launch Singapore’s first ‘Supply Chain Resilience Accelerator’.
The new programme will unite startups and enterprises to boost scalable technology solutions that help fuel supply chain resilience by addressing pain points in transport and logistics.
Over the last 13 years, Rainmaking has launched 30 ventures totalling US$2bn, including Startupbootcamp. Having invested in over 900 startups that have raised more than US$1bn, Startupbootcamp is one of the world’s most active global investors and accelerators.
The new programme looks to help build more resilient supply chains for Singapore’s burgeoning network of startups by leveraging its advantageous position as a global trade and connectivity hub. As part of the Supply Chain Resilience Accelerator programme, no less than 20 startups with high-growth potential will have the opportunity to become a part of Singapore’s vibrant ecosystem of startups.
Calling Supply Chain Solution Startups!
The programme will kick off with an open call for startups who specialise in supply chain solutions for end-to-end visibility, analytics, automation and sustainability.
Applicants will then be shortlisted and receive nurturing from Rainmaking, fostering valuable engagements with corporates to drive scalable pilots with the aim to stimulate investment opportunities.
“Covid-19 exposed the fragility of global trade, and the Supply Chain Resilience Accelerator is our opportunity to spot weak links and build back better. Piloting outside tech can be an incredibly efficient way to test viable solutions to big problems, provided you de-risk and design for scale. Our programme does precisely this by helping corporate decision-makers and startups to work on compelling business opportunities, anticipate operational risks, and ultimately co-create solutions fit for wider industry adoption,” said Angela Noronha, Director for Open Innovation at Rainmaking.
Pilots will run from Singapore, with the objective that relevant organisations may adopt successful solutions globally. To that end, Rainmaking is currently engaging with enterprises specialising in varying industry verticals and have expressed interest in partnering.
“Even as we continue to work with startups and corporations all over the globe, we are so pleased to be anchoring this program out of Singapore. With a perfect storm of tech talent, corporate innovators, and robust institutional support, it’s the ideal launchpad for testing new solutions that have the potential to change entire industries. We look forward to driving the transformation with the ecosystem,” added Angela Noronha.
One of the first selected corporate partners is Cargill, a leader in innovating and decarbonising food supply chains.
"Cargill is constantly exploring ways to improve the way we work and service our customers. Sustainability, smart manufacturing and supply chain optimisation are key areas of focus for us; exploring these from Singapore, where so many key players are already innovating, will help us form valuable partnerships from day one. We look forward to joining Rainmaking and ESG on this journey to work with, support, and grow the startup community by keeping them connected to industry needs,” said Dirk Robers, Cargill Digital Labs.
In order to raise awareness on the importance of building resilience and how technology can be leveraged to mitigate risks of disruption, industry outreach efforts will include fireside chats, discussions and demo days.
In July, Rainmaking will host a virtual insight sharing event for innovation partners as well as a ‘Deal Friday’ session that connects businesses, investors, and selected startups with investment and partnership opportunities.
Programme events will also benefit Institutes of Higher Learning by offering exposure to how advanced practitioners leverage new technologies to transform traditional supply chain management and share real-world case studies and lessons learned, better equipping next-gen supply chain leaders.
“As an advocate of market-oriented open innovation, we welcome programmes like the Supply Chain Resilience Accelerator, which aims to help companies resolve operational pain points, strengthen supply chain resilience and spur growth in a post-pandemic world. With a strong track record in driving open innovation initiatives for the transport and supply chain industry, we believe that Rainmaking’s in-depth knowledge of the ecosystem and network of global partners can complement Singapore’s efforts in accelerating our business community’s adoption of tech-enabled tools, to better manage future disruptions and capture opportunities arising from shifts in global supply chains. This will in turn help to strengthen our local ecosystem and Singapore’s status as a global hub for trade and connectivity,” said Law Chung Ming, Executive Director for Transport and Logistics, Enterprise Singapore.
AICPA: The State of Risk Management
In the fall of 2020, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA)surveyed 420 members of the AICPA’s Business and Industry group who serve in chief financial officer or equivalent senior executive positions representing different sizes and types of organisations— resulting in The 2021 State of Risk Oversight report.
Let’s review its key findings.
First, to ensure a clear understanding of our starting point, let’s review the drivers.
The report states that “risk volumes and complexities are at their highest level in 12 years, increased by significant events tied to COVID-19, social unrest, national elections, extremely low-interest rates, and a host of other risk triggers – no type of organization is immune”.
The supply chain disruptions brought on by the global pandemic changed the nature of top risks, with core operations having been significantly impacted by risk events, highlighting the need for improved risk management and continuity of business plans.
Organisations are also facing further pressures from stakeholders to provide more information on risk and mitigation strategies.
Despite the well-accepted need to better prepare for the unforeseen, only 30% of respondents report they are “mostly satisfied” or “very satisfied” with their organization’s Key Risk Indicators (KRIs).
From JIT to JIC— When in Doubt, Stock
It’s been said that a companies shortcomings can be seen in its safety stocks. Safety stocks or increased inventory levels have their time and place and are a legitimate mitigation tactic. However, companies are often quick to jump from JIT to JIC in place of evaluated, strategic decision making where trade-offs are consciously made based on organisational objectives and values.
Although there is a growing trend towards increasing safety stocks and buffering supply chains, the report states that the majority of organisations have not taken the extra step of aggregating risk information to an enterprise-level inventory of top risks. Organisations continue to struggle in integrating a more formal risk management approach and implement strategic action plans.
Financial services aside, most companies are not considering risk exposure when evaluating possible strategic initiatives or making capital allocations. i.e., risk is not even considered when making some of the business’s most important decisions.
Critically for Procurement, who are often in the position of having to make those critical tradeoffs, most organisations do not formally articulate tolerances for risk-taking as part of their strategic planning activities.
The report also highlights that there is considerable room for improvement when it comes to mitigating reputation and brand risk.
ERM— We’ve come some of the way, baby…
- • While progress has been made in implementing complete ERM processes, more than two-thirds of organizations surveyed still cannot claim they have “complete ERM in place.”
- • Public companies and financial services organisations exhibit the biggest move towards ERM in 2020.
- • With the exception of non-profit organizations, most types of organisations believe their risk management oversight is more robust or mature than any of the prior four years. But we aren’t quite there yet...
- • Fewer than half of respondents describe their organisation’s approach to risk management as “mature” or “robust.”
The Impact Culture on Risk
Some organisations believe other priorities stand in the way of more advanced risk management and that risk is managed in more informal ways, impeding the move to ERM.
The report also indicates that most organisations fail to provide training or guidance on risk management. This can potentially lead to a lack of understanding of the imperativeness of proactive risk management efforts and their ability to improve a companies performance.
Furthermore, risk management is not incentivised, with few organisations embedding risk management incentives into performance compensation arrangements.
There seems to be a misalignment between a companies tolerance for risk and its risk management actions. Despite the majority of organisations describing their risk culture as “strongly risk-averse” to “risk-averse”, only a minority of respondents describe their risk management processes as “mature” or “robust.”
So, it would seem, organisations are aware of the heightened need for risk management, consider themselves to be “risk-averse”, even perhaps strongly so, yet have immature risk management processes and a culture that impedes progress.
The question remains, what, if anything, will companies do about it?
For a detailed analysis that provides helpful perspective and benchmarking on risk management, download the 2021 State of Risk Oversight report.