Fostering Purpose-Driven Startups and Inspiring Enterprise Innovators with Science Fiction Thinking

When you touch down at LAX, you are landing in one of the rising global innovation hubs, and the SAP Next-Gen program is there.

Through global purpose partnerships now being activated in Los Angeles with Akoin, The Female Quotient, and Startup Guide, and building on the program’s network of educational institutions in southern California and around the world, SAP Next-Gen is accelerating a global movement to create new opportunities for next-generation social entrepreneurs, including women, to pursue both profit and higher social purposes aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

In Los Angeles, SAP Next-Gen is also pre-launching a new book “Science Fiction – A Starship for Enterprise Innovation.” Digital innovators can get a preview of how to accelerate purposeful innovation in the Intelligent Enterprise linked to the 17 UN Global Goals using science fiction thinking, including inspiration from futurists in Los Angeles, a global center of gravity for science fiction thinking.

Akoin Is Equal

Thought leaders and influencers on the forefront of how blockchain technology can positively impact equality and inclusion are gathering with celebrity activists, artists and futurists for an event supporting UN Global Goals No. 10, “Reduced Inequalities,” and goal No. 5, “Gender Equality.” The event features Akoin, a new blockchain venture that offers a cryptocurrency and DApp ecosystem that aims to create economic inclusion and opportunity for young entrepreneurs in Africa and other lean economies, together with The Female Quotient which is committed to advancing equality in the workplace through collaboration, activating solutions for change and creating metrics for accountability.

“We were excited to follow our New York debut with SAP Next-Gen with an event in Los Angeles sharing the Akoin venture with others who are passionate about empowering youth, reducing inequalities and building a gender equal future,” said Akon, chief visionary and founder of Akoin. “We’re thrilled to be partnering with SAP Next-Gen to build an ongoing strategy that drives inclusion, innovation and opportunity for young entrepreneurs.”

“Anything is possible when we come together with compassion and purpose,” said Shelley Zalis, CEO of The Female Quotient, which creates experiential pop-ups at global conferences, corporations, and at Girls’ Lounges on college campuses, which have opened SAP Next-Gen Lab locations that enable women to connect, collaborate, and activate change together.

The power of joining Akoin, Female Quotient, and SAP Next-Gen will be on display during Akoin is Equal. Hosted by Zalis and The Female Quotient and being held in Beverly Hills, California, speakers include Akon; Ryan Scott, CEO and co-founder of Akoin; Jon Karas, president and co-founder of Akoin; and Women in Blockchain speaker Lynn Liss, COO and co-founder of Akoin. The event also features a keynote from Kinect on global healthcare inclusion.

Innovation leaders from corporates, startups, accelerators, academia, institutions, governments, and purpose-driven citizens, including artists and celebrities, will hear a call to action to join the organizations in fostering inclusion and gender equality, and to make innovation and technology work better for young women and girls.

Startup Guide Los Angeles

SAP Next-Gen is also creating new opportunities for companies in the SAP ecosystem to connect with purpose-driven startups through an expanding global collaboration with the Startup Guide, a publishing and media company that produces guidebooks and online content to help entrepreneurs navigate and connect with different startup scenes across the world.

“The kickoff of Startup Guide Los Angeles brings new opportunities for startups considering a presence in one of the fastest growing and most future-oriented startup cities on the U.S. west coast,” said Ann Rosenberg, senior vice president and global head of SAP Next-Gen. “I predict that LA will be the next big global innovation hub based on the concentration of science fiction knowledge in the region. In this center of the U.S. entertainment industry, where futurists, writers, actors, directors, and producers bring science fiction into movies and television, startups can build on the city’s creativity and learn how to connect with leading science fiction evangelists to inspire their startup journeys.”

Startup Guide Los Angeles will also enable startups to connect with leading universities, tech community partners, innovation spaces, and other resources in LA to help them accelerate purpose-driven innovation.

“Recognizing that Los Angeles is one of the world’s fastest growing startup scenes, Startup Guide is bringing its popular entrepreneurial guidebook series to LA with support from SAP Next-Gen,” said Sissel Hansen, founder and CEO of Startup Guide. “Nominations for the startups, founders, spaces, programs, investors, and schools to be featured in Startup Guide Los Angeles will open soon.”

Based on traditional guidebooks that can be carried around everywhere, Startup Guide books help entrepreneurs navigate different startup hubs across the globe and are now in 18 different cities across Europe, the Middle East, and the U.S. including London, Berlin, Tel Aviv, Stockholm, and New York.

Packed with city essentials, practical information, in-depth interviews, and insightful tips, Startup Guide Los Angeles will guide, empower, and inspire founders in southern California to transform their business ideas into reality. It is the third book in a series to feature American cities that are hubs for entrepreneurship.

Through the global collaboration between SAP Next-Gen and Startup Guide, startups, accelerators, tech community leaders, co-working spaces, purpose-driven partners, academia, institutions, governments, and citizens in the global entrepreneurship hubs can learn how SAP Next-Gen fosters innovation with purpose, aligned with SAP’s commitment to the SDGs. Startups can also learn about services such as matchmaker and advisors within SAP Next-Gen, which connect startups with corporates interested to seed in disruptive innovation with startups, and with mentors to accelerate successful early stage innovation.

Book Pre-Launch: “Science Fiction – A Starship for Enterprise Innovation”

During Los Angeles TV and Innovation Week, hosted by Gabbcon and taking place November 1-2, 2018, Rosenberg will pre-launch the new book “Science Fiction – A Starship for Enterprise Innovation” from SAP Next-Gen and expected to be available in early 2019. She will share insights on how science fiction thinking enables digital innovation leaders in enterprises around the world to adopt a new mindset, inspiring purposeful innovation in the intelligent enterprise and linked to the 17 UN Global Goals.

“Science fiction thinking is rapidly becoming an essential ingredient in the innovation process, making it a source of true competitive advantage as intelligent enterprises seek exponential growth and innovation with purpose,” said Rosenberg. “Science fiction thinking offers a path forward for enterprises unsure about how to respond to the unprecedented and unabated technological surge we are witnessing today. Science fiction’s proven track record is one reason we are confident that science fiction thinking can serve as a wellspring for disruptive innovation and for an enterprise’s ongoing transformation into an intelligent enterprise.”

Learn more about SAP Next-Gen