Boost for Startups as Duval Union Consulting Launches Guide on Corporate Venturing in the Middle East

The MENA office of leading Belgian firm, Duval Union Consulting, today unveiled its latest book on corporate venturing in the Middle East, which takes a deep, actionable look at the value that the collaboration of corporates and startups brings to transforming the business landscape and building competitive advantage for all stakeholders.

Authored by Dado Van Peteghem, CEO and co-founder of Duval Union Consulting, with Omar Mohout, Professor of Entrepreneurship at Antwerp Management School, ‘Corporate Venturing – Accelerate Growth Through Collaboration with Startups’ is one of the first definitive studies that offers insights into the different strategies and tactics needed to accelerate corporate innovation through collaboration with startups and scaleups.

Featuring in-depth case studies where the collaborative approach has been successfully applied, The book is a hands-on guide that comes just in time as the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region ramps up efforts to build its start-up ecosystem. The book has been launched in the Middle East following huge demand from corporates here, who want to find out more about how they can work together with startups to build competitive advantage.

According to recent reports, MENA now has over 3,000 startups, with 60 per cent of the top 200 funded companies established between 2012 and 2015. The UAE serves as a driving force of the sector with 40 per cent of the region’s new tech companies set up in the country. According to Dubai SME, the UAE witnessed the nurturing of 298 digital start-ups in 2017 alone, accounting for nearly 76 per cent of the total AED2.39 billion (US$650 million) capital invested across MENA in digital start-ups last year.

The UAE also has some of the region’s outstanding success stories – from to Careem – highlighting the value of corporate venturing’ as a practical one-stop shop for businesses here to develop the key tools to create even more success stories. It provides guidance, insights, perspective and inspiration for anyone who has an interest in corporate venturing as a strategy to accelerate growth.


Dado Van Peteghem, CEO Duval Union Consulting, said: “With over 60 per cent of the Arab world’s population being below the age of 30 years, and the focus of governments in this region on nurturing a culture of local entrepreneurship, there could not have been a better time for startups to set up, grow and prosper in the MENA region than now. The evolution of the startup scene also presents opportunities and challenges for the more established corporate sector.”

He went on to add, “corporate venturing is aimed at anyone who wants to think structurally about their future, given that venturing is a strategic instrument set to thrive in this fast-changing world. Whether you want to capture technology innovation, market share, change your organisational culture or generate new revenue streams, the book provides practical insight into the different strategies that can be used to achieve competitive advantage.”

Omar Mohout, Professor of Entrepreneurship at Antwerp Management School, said: “Businesses today talk of disruptive innovation and transformational change. Yet, many are hesitant to look towards collaboration, especially with start-ups, to drive innovation and growth.  The book presents a well-researched and evidence-backed framework on how to capitalize on external innovation and strategic partnerships to foster and accelerate long-term growth. The key is to become the disruptor instead of being disrupted. The principles we put forth have been successfully tried and tested in many other parts of the world – and will serve as a referral point for the region’s corporates, startups and all stakeholders.”

André Duval, founder of the “Duval Union” Ecosystem, explained: “Corporate venturing is a vital instrument for lasting interactions with companies and start-ups that can positively influence your culture, thinking and ways of working. It is an art you must master to be successful. This book informs and moves you to undertake corporate venturing in a smart, sustainable way with great results.”

The book presents the history and modern definition of corporate venturing, which is about setting up structural collaborations with external ventures/parties to drive mutual growth. It presents how the Corporate Venturing landscape evolved over the years with a focus on its current phase of evolution in today’s era of digital transformation. It also gives insight on the must-dos – the 5 Cs – in Corporate Venturing such as the need for Coalition – selecting the right team; Configuration – choosing the right configuration for one’s company; Communication; Code of Conduct; and Cultivation – evaluation the collaboration from both sides and learning continuously.

‘Corporate Venturing – Accelerate Growth Through Collaboration with Start-ups’ is can be ordered online at

Duval Union Consulting marked its expansion into the Middle East earlier this year with the establishment of a new hub in Dubai. The firm specialises in future-proofing organisations, by helping them to navigate the digital world and leverage the power of digital technologies in order to create a competitive edge and deliver tangible growth opportunities for their business.

Since launching in 2009, Duval Union Consulting has been at the forefront of digital transformation, guiding over 150 companies across industries including finance, telecom, retail and pharmaceuticals with their digital transformation and growth strategies. The firm’s entrepreneurial, disruptive approach to consultancy, coupled with headline-grabbing work for high-profile clients including Volvo, Belfius Bank, Atlas Copco, Continental, Microsoft and Samsung has set it apart from traditional offerings.

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