France’s Tarkett and Italy’s Cosberg: Winners of the International IMP³rove Award

More than 100 nominations from 2,000 applicants based in America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Oceania were considered at the International IMP³rove Award.

The winning companies stand out for the distinctiveness and performance of their innovation management practices and are an inspiration for other companies around the globe.

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Winner in the category of large corporations:

Tarkett (France)

Tarkett is a leader in flooring and sports surface solutions that combines strategic foresighting with collaborative innovation methods. Based on this approach, Tarkett successfully launched a smart flooring solution for the healthcare and aged care sector: invisible sensors that monitor patients’ movements and can alert a nurse in case of a fall.

“Tarkett’s creative and agile organization, coupled with our innovation and creativity processes that combine strategic foresights, open innovation and user-centricity, have changed the game of the traditional flooring industry. Our teams are constantly exploring new ways of thinking and are pushing known boundaries. All of us at Tarkett are proud of receiving this award, which acknowledges the commitment of our teams.”

Anne-Christine Ayed Executive Vice President of Research, Innovation and Environment at Tarkett Group

Winner in the category of small and medium-sized companies:

Cosberg (Italy)

Cosberg manufactures machines to automate production processes. It received the award for its knowledge management platform that systematically merges feedback from suppliers and customers with lessons learned from the Cosberg teams to form a unique database of improvement suggestions.

“At Cosberg, we believe each employee can generate innovation. Over the years, this has resulted in a continuous knowledge-creation process. The management of such a great heritage is carried out daily as the company’s core business. The outcome is the real enhancement of this knowledge, which is guarded, filed, and shared among all staff. This innovative approach is based on the willingness to call ourselves into question every day to pursue continuous improvement, both in terms of process and product.”

Michele Viscardi Business Development Director at Cosberg

Finalists in the category of large corporations:

Arçelik (Turkey)

A global consumer durables and electronics company globally known for its brands Beko, Arctic and Defy – for its user-oriented innovation practices. Arcelik’s believes that innovation is one key driver for competitiveness and set up an innovation directorate and threaded innovation metrics to supports its sustainable profitable growth objectives. For Arcelik global partnerships and open innovation are key to find revolutionary product ideas. One such example is a mobile-controlled washing machine that is a response to a consumer need that was uncovered in field research and home visits.

Fleury (Brazil)

A medical and health organization, for its game-based approach to gather and process innovative ideas. Fleury shared an equal amount of virtual coins amongst all its employees and invites them to submit innovation ideas. When entering new ideas in a virtual market, employees receive additional coins. Ideas stay on the market for 2 weeks and all employees can invest their virtual coins in them. If one innovation-idea is launched, the investors are rewarded with additional coins which can be converted into rewards.

People’s Insurance Company of China

A property and casualty insurance company, where innovation drives a multi-year company company transformation. PICC was a large state owned insurance company, founded in 1948, with a glorious history and traditional characteristics. The turnaround into a company that is ready for the future is driven by innovation. Supporting systems and processes were installed, and over one hundred professionals support PICC’s innovation management and all employees are incentivized to participate. This has led to over 2,500 innovation projects out over the last four years and an investment of €2.3b in product, service, process and business model innovations, leading to a doubling in operating profits.

Rosenbauer (Austria)

The world’s leading manufacturer of systems for firefighting and disaster protection, for its all-encompassing approach to foster and maintain an innovation culture where every employee participates in innovation activities. An IT-system supports this integration and every idea shared is evaluated and receives feedback. Flexilight, a light mast that combines highest light yield from LED illuminants and full flexibility in all directions is one such example.

Finalists in the category of small and medium-sized companies:

Action Manufacturing (New Zealand)

A provider of bespoke design solutions in the commercial transport industry, where innovation is embedded in its design-based culture. The project “Frontline Ambulances” is an example where insights and feedback from users, i.e. paramedics resulted in a significant number of major design changes. Prototypes were developed and tested, and went through iterations and evolutions, until a new ambulance design emerged. Paramedics and fleet management are now involved in prototyping sessions with plywood mock-ups.

Fidko (Macedonia)

Who develops and implements complete supervisory control and data acquisition systems, software and fully automated production lines, for its interdisciplinary innovation practices required due to the diversity of the process automation industry. This interdisciplinary approach has become Fidko’s recognizable trademark and connects electro-technical engineers, chemists, biologists and technicians. It allows Fidko to serve a range of industries from biotech, mining, wood processing to e.g. packaging.

Labris Networks (Turkey)

An R&D focused provider of network security solutions, for its agile, issue-centered, and iterative innovation methodology. Labris gained competitive advantage in an environment where global competition is harsh and technology changes quickly. Labris focuses on a niche area of network and security, and infuses a creative culture of innovation into its corporate culture. One such example is an innovative solution against cyber attacks that resulted from an issue-centered, iterative and agile approach to innovation.

Solwa (Italy)

A startup from the University Lab working on green innovation solutions in the field of water treatment and dehydration processes of food and waste relying exclusively on renewable energy, for its needs-based stakeholder involvement in innovation. To identify target markets, Solwa developed an algorithm, based on 26 indicators for 122 countries. Based on their innovative idea, Solwa developed many technological applications and now holds international patents for them. Prototypes were transformed prototypes into manufacturing lines. Solwa was acquired by Santex Rimar Group in 2015.

Message from Carlos Marinelli, CEO of Grupo Fleury

The Jury of the latest International IMP³rove Award

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