Students, start-ups, and MNCs coming together to crowdsource solutions (via Agorize)

Data is the big deal in business and large corporations like Google will do anything, and pay anything to get their hands on it. Currently, many companies will pay another company to conduct market research on their behalf so they can find out new product ideas and markets they currently haven't tapped. There is also the Amazon Mechanical Turk crowdsourcing Internet marketplace to use human intelligence to solve micro problems.


However, companies would obviously rather not pay more than they have to. What's more, they want the best knowledge their money can buy. Agorize is attempting to fill this gap by promising companies and Multinational Corporations (MNC) that they can crowdsource the best solutions to their business and innovation problems in a way no other company has done before.


Agorize recently received $2.6 million investment from Iris Captial, Capnamic Ventures, and Ader Finance. Hence, it seems there is already a lot of interest in this French start-up company, with big players like Google, Microsoft, and Bank of America wanting part of the action as they plan to work with Agorize to source new ideas and solutions.


These big companies will pay between 10,000 and 100,000 euros for Agorize to create and manage an Open Innovation challenge for them. These challenges can be taken on by a network of students, start-up companies, and engineers. The more involved the collaboration and management process, the more expensive the fee. Agorize currently has a large network of over 15,000 students in 2,000 schools worldwide willing to participate in Agorize Open Innovation challenges. They also have a large number of start-up companies who can work to source ideas and manage new crowdsource projects. Their network of engineers is also ready to work on teams to design new design ideas.


Overall, the idea seems to suit MNCs and Agorize quite well, but what about the participants in these Open Innovation challenges? Agorize is basically holding carrots in front of student horses on this one: flaunting job possibilities and gift rewards for successful participation in challenges. Some of the rewards for students who win challenges include gift cards, iPads, and travel rewards. They also get to meet and network with individuals from MNCs along with other students, start-ups, and engineers.


It seems like a lot of students are taking the bait on this. Probably because they don't have bills to pay and can therefore afford to waste some time and energy pursing the faint smell of a job opportunity. It seems the job climate is really heating up for these poor undergraduates. But if you are interested, you could probably find this fun and rewarding to do in your spare time.


Who knows? Maybe some of the international students will get together at some point and start their own start-up companies. It's a brave new world out there – or so I'm told.


For now, this seems to be the future of market survey platforms and possibly even job recruitment for big innovation MNCs like Google and Microsoft.



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