Market pressures can drive companies to innovate, but corporate innovation can also drive market value. One of the biggest drivers in how the market rewards companies and drives their stock prices higher is how well they can sustain innovation and invest in that innovation. Across industries, as companies successfully innovate, valuations tend to move higher. By identifying the companies the market is rewarding for continued success in innovation, we might be able to understand what kind of companies the market will reward in the future.
The GIM Institute (GIMI) and Valens Research worked together on this piece, leveraging GIMI’s deep insights in innovation and Valens knowledge of the UAFRS framework and corporate performance and valuation to identify great innovators who the market is rewarding for their innovation. We’ve found 10 unique companies across the global corporate universe that are worthy of highlight.
We identified these companies using a multi-step process:
Identified firms with an excellent history of innovation, in products, processes, creating new markets and other areas.
Reviewed that universe of companies to see which companies have been able to generate value in terms of innovation based on their UAFRS-adjusted Return on Assets (ROA) being well above their required rate of returns for a multi-year period of time.
Verified those companies continued to invest in innovation and to grow, as identified by rapid investment in UAFRS-adjusted Asset growth into high ROA businesses.
Identified which of those companies the market was rewarding for their innovation with premium valuations.
To read more about GIMI and Valens and the processes we use to analyze companies, read at the bottom of the article.
Pharmaceutical (Pharma) industry is a set of public and private organizations that discover, develop, and manufacture drugs and medications (pharmaceuticals). The 19th century is the beginning of the modern era of the pharmaceutical industry, because then it started focusing on chemical synthesis. Prior to that, for thousands of years people relied on medicinal properties of plants, animals, and minerals. The 20th century marks the unification of chemistry and physiology, which increased the understanding of basic drug-discovery processes. Today the pharmaceutical industry discovers myriad of drugs to prevent and treat even most complicated illnesses, while facing challenges of attaining regulatory approvals, confidentiality and pressure from patients.
The pharmaceutical industry invests more of its top line earnings into R&D than any other industry – roughly 15%. However pharma industry is still known as slow adopter of innovation. The reason is, that pharmaceutical industry is overly regulated, in order to ensure that medications are safe to consume. Furthermore, most of pharma companies have extremely strict internal policies, which restrict them from sharing the data with the others. It slows down the processes dramatically.
Innovation Thought Leaders Ronald Jonash and Hitendra Patel in one of their Innovation management and strategy books Healthovate! highlight:
Innovations in helping people feel better and live longer have recently exploded because of a simultaneous increase in our understanding of the health needs of consumers as well as the expansion of tools available to address those needs. This dizzying growth in demand and supply in this spectrum creates previously unimagined room for novel ideas and practices. For instance, the increased availability of information about therapeutic options have changed many people from passive consumers of health services to pro-active partners with healthcare providers in determining the best response to a health problem.
In these times of rapid changes, for Pharma companies it is not enough to focus solely on selling drugs and medications. Today the industry aims for more holistic approach with integrated services, customization and changes in life-styles. It leads to the trends, to which Pharma companies either have to respond to, or then to vanish. Top 10 Innovation Trends in Pharmaceutical Industry is an exquisite opportunity to learn how Pharma Industry is shifting to more digitized, customized and personalized era.
Scroll down to find out what are the Top 10 Innovation Trends that are shaping Pharmaceutical Industry.
Our ability to get from one place to another, nearby or distant, nowadays is taken for granted. The evolution of transportation is marked with adversities, some of which led to fascinating inventions (a wheel must be the most famous one). Over the centuries, modes of transportation were increasing in levels of complexity and efficiency in order to meet the changing needs of a humankind.
Throughout history the means of transportation evolved greatly and got us there, where we are today: traveling over globe in less than two days, crossing the channels by trains via underwater tunnels, and viewing beyond the edge of our solar system with a spacecraft. It all started with the first mean of transportation, which was, of course, the human foot.
About 3,500 BC in the Middle East was invented the wheel. By 3000 BC people tamed horses, donkeys and later camels, while Egyptians invented the sailing boat. The first paved roads were build by 312 BC. Centuries later, during the 15th century people were crossing the entire oceans by advanced sailing ships. In the phase of Industrial Revolution at 19th century people used steam-powered railway locomotives, amphibious vehicles and bicycles. In 1957 people launched man made satellite into orbit — Sputnik; in 1969 Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon. These are only a very few examples of amazing transportation evolution.
The list of top 10 Innovations in Transportation gives us a clear picture where we are today and where we are heading in the nearest future. In this rapid speed of innovation, it may seem that we already live in the futuristic world. We drive the cars that can fly or dive, and of course the cars, that we do not need to drive at all. With the help of mobile applications, like Waze, people can send the latest updates about the situation of roads at any place in the world. What is the next step in transportation, which will exceed the expectations coming from the most creative imaginations?
Scroll down to find out what are the Top 10 Innovations in Transportation.
Innovation Conferences are the fastest way to understand what is out there: who is the industry leader, which thought leadership is worth following, who are the potential partners and competitors. The Innovation Conferences prompt about the latest trends and help us build the network of the most important connections.
There are hundreds of Innovation Conferences around the world, therefore companies have to be smart in picking the most relevant ones and just collecting the second-hand insights from the remaining ones.
The list of Top 10 Innovation Conferences suggests the conferences that innovation leaders and entrepreneurs should attend in different locations around the world.
Scroll down to find out what are the Top 10 Innovation Conferences.
Woman and innovation may have been considered oxymoronic by most people up until the late twentieth century. The majority of the most famous inventors and discoverers turn out to be men – in large part because women have often been denied the education and opportunity required to make similar achievements.
Thanks to slow but appreciable progress in the last several decades, women have become empowered to take on more roles as equal partners with men in science, innovation and the public sector. Despite these gains, most countries still tend to be paternalistic, which creates a glass-ceiling effect for many women.
This group of game-changing Women Innovators is not only about women who created or improved something significantly with technological or business value. This list also includes women who innovated in the realm of politics and culture, which may be understood as creating foundational changes for further progress by women in a wide array of domains.
This list of Top 10 Women Innovators recognizes different women innovators from the early nineteenth century to the present. These women could be categorized into three groups: 1) The breakers of stigmatized rules and traditions (Marie Curie, Ada Lovelace); 2) The stars in so-called masculine fields (Indira Gandhi, Katherine Johnson); and, 3) The champions in today’s innovation environment (Michela Magas, Angélica Fuentes and Audrey Cheng).
Scroll down to find out what are the Top 10 Women Innovators.
The 20th of March officially marks the start of Spring in North Hemisphere. It is the time when people spend more time outdoors and try to live-up to the unexpected ideas that spring up in everyone’s head. Connecting these two – new ideas and time outdoors – we get plenty of amazing outdoor innovations.
Top 10 Outdoor Innovations fall into three categories: (1) Technology advancements for spending time in wilderness, such as Electric Bicycle Wheel and Solar Paper; (2) Safety and Protection, include Personal Water Filter and Anti-theft Carrying Bag, and (3) Bridging recycling with style, for example Terrex Sports Shoes and Recycled Fabric Outdoor Clothes.
In modern societies everyone is enabled to create the next big thing. Innovation competitions encourage independent experts from various industries to take a part in managing innovation challenges. By definition, innovation competition is an attempt by independent agents to solve an innovation challenge of a certain company.
The list of Top 10 Innovation Competitions was created based on the following criteria.
The Innovation Competition must:
Have more impactful and powerful outctome/solution, than an output of product development process for corporate clients;
Request for breakthrough and disruptive innovations, while incremental innovation might come as an additional option;
Apply crowdsourcing practices;
Have well-established mentorship and leadership program;
Be regionally or globally acknowledged and authoritative competition.
Scroll down to find out what are the Top 10 Innovation Competitions, that may generate breathtaking innovations in the nearest future.
Both women in innovation and innovation for women are life changers. Women around the world have worked hard to reach equality, representation in governmental institutions, human rights and peace. Today more than ever before, we are proud to name the greatest female innovators and thought leaders, who have brought their breakthrough ideas to the global market.
The environment is boosting with innovations for women. These ingenious innovations make lives of women safer, easier, and more enjoyable. Some of the innovations are so well adopted, that may even raise a question: “how did women live without that before?”
Top 10 Innovations For Women can be classified into three categories: 1) Increasing the standard of life (Talwar Bindi, Inhaled Oxytocin); 2) Building/adding self-confidence (Mondays without mirrors, Shapewear); 3) Creating future comfort now (Vina Mobile Application, Bellabeat Smart Jewelry)
Scroll down to find out what are the Top 10 Innovations For Women
Bellabeat Smart Jewelry. Bellabeat
Bellabeat is a leaf-shaped bio-tracker that is designed to be worn all the time. It can be worn as a bracelet, a necklace, and a clip. It is sturdy and water-resistant, but it looks like a piece of everyday jewelry. If a woman doesn’t want Bellabeat to be visible, it is small and self effacing enough to be placed under the clothes. The Bellabeat tracks not only steps and sleep, but also a woman’s period, and it weaves all of the information together to predict how stressed she might be at any given time.
Happiness only increases by being shared. Researches have shown, that by our very nature, giving makes us far happier than receiving. Social innovation is a brilliant way to use one’s creativity and strategic thinking to tackle the most challenging world’s problems.
Social innovation is the creation of new ideas that address social problems by reconceiving the status quo to create more sustainable and just systems that benefit marginalized groups and society as a whole. To meet this definition, these ideas should be able to demonstrate their impact and consider pathways to financial sustainability and scale.* Social innovation is not only about helping the others, but it also has an impact on self-realization as a form of recognizing the impact one person can make; social innovation is a tool to build communities around the same purpose. It can affect a certain small group of people, a region or the entire world by bringing awareness of a social challenge.
Top 10 Social Innovations were gathered around the effort to re-build people’s lives (e.g. The attempt of Alberta Local Government to reach zero homelessness), to reach greater life standard (e.g. clean water by 33 buckets and Ash Bricks by Green Cake), managing crisis (Tent Jackets by ADIFF and Emergency Response by Team Rubicon) and finally, enabling people to handle their own lives (Patrimonio Hoy by CEMEX and Waste-pickers for Dignity by I Got Garbage).
Scroll down to find out what are these Top 10 Social Innovations. May it be your inspiration for good deeds.
Ash Bricks. Green Cake
A civil engineer, Mashharawi and her business partner Rawan Abdul Lateef from Gaza Strip, found a way how to turn ash into a brick. These bricks are eco-friendly, affordable and need less cement compared to the regular bricks (it is an important factor, since cement delivery is restricted to this area). Furthermore, these bricks are made without sand and gravel. After three wars in only 10 years and thousands of people losing their homes, this social innovation will help in rebuilding the region.
Emergency Response. Team Rubicon
Team Rubicon unites the skills and experiences of military veterans with first responders to rapidly deploy emergency response teams. Veterans after leaving the military via Team Rubicon Project attain purpose through disaster relief. Besides they create a community, built by serving with others; and gain self-worth, from recognizing the impact one individual can make. Team Rubicon's primary mission is providing disaster relief to those affected by natural disasters, either domestic or international. By pairing the skills and experiences of military veterans with first responders, medical professionals, and technology solutions, Team Rubicon aims to provide the greatest service and impact possible.
Housing First. Alberta Government, Canada
Alberta Government in Canada achieved impossible: zero homelessness in the region. The local government applied constructive and innovative approach in solving poverty and homelessness in their region. They came across the fact that paying for the negative effects of the poverty costs much more than dealing with it directly. Negative effects of poverty include problems with physical and mental health, education outcomes, trust and community life, homicide rates, children’s health and wellbeing, drug abuse, and more. Prevention to these problems is cheaper than dealing with the outcome. The solution is that after 10 days of recognition that the person has no place to live, the government provides the living space. It was started by acquiring 50 units of living space for homeless people, who after getting all needed support would be able to live on their own. Further more, this project brought people together; part of the project was covered by various kinds of donations (such as land).
Jacket Tent. ADIFF
This ADIFF jacket that transforms into tent was made specifically to help refugees. ADIFF idea is built on a foundation of giving. With any purchase from the brand, a portion of the proceeds will go towards donating the most needed products to refugees. Before introducing any product to the market, ADIFF filters its ideas through 3 level questions: 1) Is it a solution? 2) Is it innovative? 3) Will it help? Besides the jacket2tent, ADIFF offers jackets that turn into sleeping bags, that can also float, and the other refugee crisis focused items.
Magic Bus. Hult Prize
Magic Bus is a winning concept of social innovation at Hult Prize competition, an annual contest that challenges students to tackle a pressing global problem. The Magic Bus team focused on Nairobi, 4th highest commuter pain point in the world. 2.5 million people in Nairobi live in slums, 70% of whom rely on the city's ad-hoc bus system. The bus system has 20,000 private buses, called Matatus, which seat between 33 to 45 people. Commuters sometimes have to wait up to two hours for a bus. The solution-social innovation was tech based: Magic Bus lets riders pre-book their bus tickets using basic mobile phones - it's SMS based, so doesn't even require an internet connection. It uses existing bus networks and integrates mobile payments through the country's popular system called M-PESA. It also tackled the problem of long waiting times: platform users can track where the bus is and how long it takes until the bus arrives. This efficient way of travelling allow people plan better their working/leisure times and increase their daily income by at least $1 a day.
Patrimonio Hoy. Cemex
Patrimonio Hoy is Cemex program of the progressive housing for low income families. It is meant to improve quality of life for low-income families by providing them with comprehensive solutions to their construction needs. Over 2.3 million people in Latin America have benefited from this program, which sets out solutions tailored to users, in accordance with their construction needs and ability to repay. As long as they have a lot on which to build, those interested in participating in Patrimonio Hoy receive comprehensive advice from an architect who works directly with them to design a custom plan. It is business model innovation, where CEMEX as global building materials company has created a well-planned savings and credit scheme. Its innovative approach reduces significantly the cost and time needed by the poor to improve their housing.
Solar Inflatable Lights. LuminAID
LuminAID enters with the statement, that 1.6 billion people around the world lack proper access to electricity. Through the Give Light, Get Light program, LuminAID partners with NGOs and non-profits from all over the world to distribute LuminAID lights to individuals who will greatly benefit from a safe, rechargeable light source. Up to this day, more 25,000 lights were distributed to charities in more than 60 countries.
Sourcing employment. Samasource
Samasource was born out of the belief that talent is equally distributed, but opportunity is not. The social innovation is the attempt to create a credible platform that would enable low-income people get an opportunity to work for international companies. It was achieved by sourcing data projects from some of the world's largest companies through 5 step program: identifying talents, training, employment, work experience and, finally, long term careers. Samasource is a pioneer in the field of impact sourcing, the practice of hiring people from the bottom of the pyramid to complete digital work.
Waste-pickers for Dignity. I Got Garbage
I Got Garbage is a Mindtree initiative in the area of ragpicker livelihood and solid waste management. Its primary goal is to improve the livelihood and working conditions of ragpickers, and to help them integrate into mainstream economy. An equally important goal is to involve citizens and communities in solving the problem of managing solid waste, such that we collectively create jobs for hard working ragpickers, and also make our cities cleaner. I Got Garbage achieves this goal through the following activities: (1) Help ragpickers offer waste management service by organizing themselves into franchises; (2) Build online marketplaces where waste generators (households, apartments, offices) can buy waste management services from ragpicker franchises, (3) Engage urban communities in solving the solid waste problem, (4) Facilitate access to social security schemes for the ragpickers
33 buckets. Arizona State University
33 Buckets is a social innovation project to tackle the problem of global clean water crisis. 33 Buckets helps communities in underdeveloped countries gain access to clean drinking water. About 1.8 billion people globally do not have access to safe, potable water, and each year millions die by drinking from contaminated sources. The 33 buckets team engineered water filters that were delivered to various global areas in need. Broad network of non-profits were helping in spreading the word of this social innovation.
Innovation in sweet foods is really tricky. For centuries people created traditions and customs around sweet foods, such as candies, cakes and pancakes. Even a slim change can be easily rejected when it comes to what is already delicious and sweet. Therefore introducing Top 10 Innovations in Sweet Foods should be seen a serious challenge to represent how amazing things can be even better.
Based on the this challenge, innovations in this specific niche of food industry are around creating convenience such as Sandwich Pancake, offering new experiences such as Soundy Candy and TCHO chocolate bars, bridging two concepts into one such as Cronut and Cookie Cup or meeting the crucial needs of healthy life style such as vegan gluten free ice-cream and Lavle dark chocolate.
This list could become easily a part of a bucket list: things to enjoy in life. Scroll down to find out what are the Top 10 Innovations in Sweet Foods
Cookie Cup. Sardi Innovation
Cookie Cup consists of pastry covered with a special icing sugar that works as an insulator, making the cup waterproof and sweetening the coffee at the same time. When the coffee is consumed, people can eat their cookie.