10 Successful KICKBOX Intrapreneurship Projects

A highly debated thought in corporate innovation programs is that of there being 'no such thing as a bad idea’. While this notion has merit, it is important for innovation leaders to consider the true objectives behind introducing an innovation program in their company, before taking a stance on this statement.  

Is the goal of the program merely to generate ideas or is the scope broader in that the program hopes to achieve cultural and company-wide transformation?  

If the goal is to generate as many ideas as possible, sift through them and then choose those that stand the best chance to generate success, then yes - there might be such a thing as ‘bad ideas. If the goal however is to focus on more than just idea generation and instead empower all employees to engage in innovation and thereby transform company culture, then there should not be such a thing as a bad idea. 


To unleash employee creativity, it is crucial for employees to feel encouraged to share their ideas freely and boldly. Some of the most brilliant employees might only feel safe sharing their ideas once they realize that innovation is not only reserved for a select few in the company.  

Low Entry Barriers to Innovation with KICKBOX 

KICKBOX Intrapreneurship  democratizes innovation. It has helped more than 40 companies encourage employee innovation by allowing team members to submit ideas through a structured process. 

During the initial stage, employees are given a budget (starting credit), 20% of their working hours, access to a network of innovation experts as well as access to a physical Method Toolbox and the KICKBOOK – a comprehensive step-by-step guide to direct the intrapreneurs through the process of validating their idea. This helps the employees to de-risk their ideas based on collected data and feedback. 

After a two-month period, the innovators present their progress to a jury of representatives (usually from within the company). Should their idea successfully advance beyond the next phase which is also known as the pilot phase (the BlueBox) to full market implementation (the GoldBox), team members are given the opportunity to use their entire working time to propel their ideas forward.  

This method makes innovation easy for employees to understand and engage in, leading to positive outcomes in different industries. From construction and real estate to telecommunications and tourism – the ideas are plentiful and speak to all different types of innovation. 

Here are examples of various KICKBOX projects that successfully completed the GoldBox phase (Phase 3 of the KICKBOX Intrapreneurship program):


1. Smartdetect

Markus Hochstrasser, Swisscom 

Smartdetect is a spinout from Swisscom that offers innovative sensor technology for customized solutions in the security and environmental sectors. Markus Hochstrasser, a former Swisscom Banking employee and founder of smartdetect, noticed an increase in graffiti in his neighborhood. This inspired him to come up with a new way to use sensor technology. He wanted to detect vandalism and other unwanted activities in public spaces without relying on traditional security cameras.


2. Parcandi

Corsin Suler, Baloise

Parcandi is a parking-space solution that can be found across various European cities. Via an app, drivers are connected to free and unused parking spaces in their areas, allowing users to reserve spaces on demand. This helps save time for individuals looking for parking and ensures that empty parking spaces are better utilized. 


3. Around Azerbaijan

Samira Aliyeva, PASHA Holdings 

In recent years, the number of tourists visiting Azerbaijan has increased significantly. Around Azerbaijan was created by Samira Aliyeva from PASHA Holdings. It helps people explore Azerbaijan through individual and group travel. It also offers tours to visitors. The goal is to offer a travel platform that helps people explore the country, by glorifying the beauties of Azerbaijan and promoting the culture, with professional guides and an excellent team. 


4. Tunnel Element

Manuel Entfellner, Implenia 

Manuel Entfellner, construction manager for the Semmering Base Tunnel and Implenia Intrapreneur, used KICKBOX to develop and patent a yielding element made of high strength expanded polystyrene. Yielding elements work as a buffer when tunnel tubes face excessive pressure because of rock masses. Until now, manufacturers made these elements of steel, which presented challenges because of their weight, cost, and complexity. Manuel's solution has since been patented and is being developed further to integrate it into other tunnelling projects soon.  


5.  Sendplify

Minh Hoang Nguyen, Post Luxembourg 

Sendplify is a virtual communication assistant that simplifies the process of creating emails (or electronic messages) on mobile devices. By using pre-formatted content based on past data submitted by the user, it allows the user to save time and effort by making it easier to write emails (or long messages) on a smartphone. 


6. Mobile SOS Station

Romed Schwyter, Implenia 

If construction sites have defibrillators and other life-saving devices available on site, these are frequently not easily accessible. Recognizing that time is critical in an emergency, led to the development of a mobile SOS station by Romed Schwyter and his team members. 

The station has all the necessary medical equipment on site. It can be easily moved around using a crane or pallet trolley. This is helpful during construction activities. The equipment includes defibrillators, emergency kits, fire extinguishers, and other essential tools. Keeping these items together helps to make construction sites safer. 


7. WiSort (Jaipur Robotics)

Ermes Zamboni and Nikhil Prakash, Swisscom 

WiSort, now known as Jaipur Robotics, creates advanced technology for better waste management and user experience. Cutting-edge robots and AI algorithms extract information tags from waste. These tags include material, color, shape, product type, and brand. 

This aims to solve the issue of waste sorting by improving the way people worldwide use public trash bins. Better sorting can help reduce pollution and increase material recycling. 


8.    Functional Gym

Kevin Dietiker, LGT 

Testmanager at LGT, Kevin Dietiker, had the idea to introduce an on-site gym at the LGT Banking office in Bendern, Liechtenstein. Due to this office being located in the countryside, he noticed many people having to drive to the gym either during lunch or after hours. 

Realizing that the office infrastructure is perfectly suited to house an in-house gym for LGT employees, he submitted his idea via the KICKBOX program and garnered widespread support. This helps employees stay fit and is also better for the environment because they don't have to travel to the gym. The concept could be expanded to other LGT locations and branches. 


9.    Bottleplus

Christian Käser and Linus Lingg , ETH Zurich

In response to the enormous consumption of PET bottles across the globe, innovators Christian Käser and Linus Lingg developed the first ever on-the-go carbonation bottle. After attending our CEO Dave Hengartner’s Lean Startup course at ETH Zurich, the duo began working on their idea through the KICKBOX program. The Product: a resuable hard-shell water bottle with a detachable adapter that connects to a CO2 gas tank for refilling. The adapter can be used to carbonate water up to 10 times before needing a recharge.  


10. TrustRelay

Jorge Alvarado and Lukas Hohl, Swisscom 

TrustRelay is a start-up that aims to close the data-exchange gap between companies and facilitate easy and pragmatic data-sharing. While working on a project to combine blockchain technology with Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices, Jorge and Lukas stumbled on a different problem: the lack of secure data collaboration between partner organizations. This leads to the creation of silos that prevent companies from harnessing the many benefits of data-sharing. The solution: The duo created a platform for clear, actionable data sharing agreements and a data engine to collaborate with external data. 


While some of these ideas have created new revenue streams or significantly reduced costs, resulting in excellent returns on investment, others are not quite there yet, but their potential is evident. Some ideas may simply make life easier without a substantial financial impact. However, all of them have been developed into something useful for businesses and society at large, within a safe and cost-effective context.  

Empower your employees to validate and bring their ideas to life within your organization, through KICKBOX Intrapreneurship. Equipped with tailored templates and tools, this program seamlessly transforms raw concepts into actionable solutions, making innovation easily accessible to every team member. To find out more, get in touch with our experts now.

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