Stories about innovation

News

M&S Launches First Sustainability-Focused Innovation Challenge

M&S’s Ignite team – the home of open innovation at M&S – is looking for ideas and technologies that can encourage more sustainable behaviours amongst its customers, as well as solutions that can help M&S achieve further efficiencies in its agricultural supply chains.

View Story

News

Grosvenor Launches Shopping Experience Innovation Challenge with True

Grosvenor has launched an innovation challenge seeking to discover new technologies and partners that are putting customer experience at the heart of bricks and mortar retail.

View Story

Insight

Don't Get Cheap, Get Creative

As the price of materials, energy and products soar, it's tempting for retailers and brands to discount to keep their customers, whose disposable income continues to shrink.  For many brands the urge to discount, if not well thought through, can be damaging to your brand and easily spiral in a race to the bottom. In this piece we take a look at how businesses can lean into strategic partnerships, innovative tech platforms and other ways to creatively keep your customers.

View Story

Insight

Responsible NFTs

NFTs (and applications utilising blockchain technology more broadly) are coming under increasing scrutiny for their impact on the planet, and for good reason. The blockchain technology which enables the creation and trade of digital assets is environmentally damaging due to the ‘mining’ processes required to certify transactions, which use a LOT of power. Having said this NFTs certainly don’t have to be entirely at odds with ESG considerations.

View Story

Insight

Buying into the Metaverse through a tour of Truetopia

For the past two years most of our community interactions have been virtual – but none were quite like the event we hosted at the end of 2021. We jumped into the Metaverse with our guests to take them around a ‘Truetopia’ of virtual shops, streets and leisure spots as our avatars got together in the virtual auditorium, to discuss realistic opportunities for brands and retailers in our community.

View Story

Insight

The Metaverse: a series of opportunities

The Metaverse has well and truly landed. All things 'metaverse' have reached fever pitch since Facebook's rebranding to Meta. The October 2021 announcement not only set out a vision for what a fully immersive digital world powered by VR would look like for the company's 2.89 billion monthly active users, but also confirmed a colossal investment in making this a reality – $10 billion this year alone. Since then, everyone's been talking about it.

View Story

Insight

A Meta-Glossary of Terms

We have been immersed in the virtual world and metaverse for quite some time but the landscape is still evolving and we're still learning. We've done some of the hard work so you don't have to by putting together a glossary of terms that might help unravel the mystery of the metaverse.

View Story

News

True to help Shell improve water efficiency in forecourts

Shell’s latest Innovation Challenge with True aims to find the most exciting businesses and ideas to help its 45,000 forecourts improve their water efficiency.

View Story

News

Johnson & Johnson Consumer Health works with True to find future-fit technologies and services

Johnson & Johnson has chosen to work with True to run its LaunchPad process, using its own international network of startups and investors to identify and filter market-leading solutions capable of adding value to one of the world’s largest consumer goods companies.

View Story

News

True Leads Consumer & Retail Trade Mission to New York

True co-hosted a consumer and retail trade mission to New York in collaboration with the UK Department for International Trade. Hoxton Analytics, Localistico, Mishipay, Spirable, ADAY, All Shades Covered, Placed and VITL all took part representing the breadth of businesses we invest in.

View Story

Insight

Investing for Growth in a Changing World

Here at True we're fortunate to witness the innovation activities of a wide range of players from early-stage brands through to emergent, scaling operators all the way to some of the largest global businesses. In addition to ongoing, organic innovation we are increasingly seeing a trend towards acquisition as a means for larger companies to expand their capabilities and reach. Here Matt investigates why more businesses are turning to investment to innovate.

View Story

Podcast

True Talks: Rich meets ... Giles Humphries, Mindful Chef

Giles Humphries, CMO and Co-founder of health-focused food box, Mindful Chef, talks to Rich about how he and his Co-founder built their business to put purpose, people and planet at the heart of their operations. Giles also shares his founder journey from the early stages through to its acquisition by Nestle and discusses some of the challenges faced during the pandemic, which included how to deal with a trebling of demand over a very short period.

View Story

Podcast

True Talks: Rich meets ... Jonathan Petrides, allplants

With an increased awareness among consumers of the impact a meat-free diet can have on climate change and the environment, allplants has put plant-based eating at the heart of their business. Hear how Jonathan (JP) has built his business to harness not only the vegan target market, but the thousands of consumers who are looking to put plants at the heart of their diet, whether that is for their own health reasons, or for the health of the environment.

View Story

Podcast

True Talks: Rich meets ... Alison Hutchinson CBE, Pennies

Alison Hutchinson CBE, Founder & CEO of Pennies, the UK's leading fintech charity, speaks to Rich about the charity's unique model and challenges in funding the development of such an innovative platform. They discuss everything from having to create a complicated payments platform, with a lean team, through to the huge impact retailers and brands can make to their nominated charities through the micro-donations platform.

View Story

Podcast

True Talks: Rich meets ... Catherine Bond Muir and Alice Powell

How do you level the playing field between the sexes in male-dominated sports? If you were brave you could start by setting up a new all-female motor sport business and race series. This is exactly what Catherine Bond Muir has done with the single-seater W-Series. Catherine speaks to Rich about the commercial challenges of setting up such an expensive sport and fundraising more generally, while driver Powell talks to Rich about her role as an influencer in supporting and growing the series.

View Story

Podcast

True Talks: Rich Anson meets … Lucy Jewson

True acquired sustainable kidswear brand Frugi in 2018. Nine months on, Rich Anson catches up with Frugi’s Co-founder Lucy Jewson and True’s Co-founder Paul Cocker about why Lucy and her husband – a couple with a passion for the planet – decided True would be the right investor to work with as they grow their company the responsible way.

View Story

Podcast

True Talks: Rich Anson meets…Andy Smallwood

Ribble Cycles is a bike brand to be passionate about, and the company has rewarded our own faith with superb performance since we acquired it in November 2015. True brought in CEO Andy Smallwood, formerly of Boardman Bikes, to help support the growth and transformation of the brand. The results of the rebrand have been phenomenal, with sales growing 50% year-on-year and a significant increase in the average selling price of each bike, reflecting the increasingly aspirational nature of the brand.

View Story

Podcast

True Talks: Rich Anson meets…Danny Gray.

True invested in the game-changing beauty brand War Paint in 2020, following a period of massive growth for the company. Founder of War Paint, Danny Gray, talks to Rich about how he used his experience as a teenager to build a successful business in one of the fastest growing sectors of the beauty industry.

View Story

News

The Cotswold Company announces Ralph Tucker as CEO

An exciting new chapter for The Cotswold Company begins, as True appoints Ralph Tucker as CEO of the business, charged with driving the next stage of growth. The Cotswold Company, a leading online furniture retailer and a True portfolio company, specialises in oak, pine and painted furniture and also sells through its showrooms in Stow-on-the-Wold, Chelmsford, Norwich, Godalming and Harrogate.

View Story

Opinion

‘New technologies are turning good payment experiences into a competitive advantage’

Following a year of rapid acceleration in digital adoption – to coin a Bezos phrase – many brands and retailers are looking at how, using technology, they can turn cost centres into profit centres, a practise that we, at True, love.

View Story

insight

Q-Commerce: our quick takeaways on a rapidly evolving sector

Not a day seems to go by that a New ‘Quick’ grocery operator doesn't raise funds - launching in a new country or forming a new partnership. In just the past few weeks Berlin-based Gorillas has raised $1bn, and launched a partnership with Tesco.

View Story

News

True launches third PE fund: a huge milestone in our journey to reimagine PE.

Consumer specialists True scale their investment and innovation firm to more than £600m AUM in just five years – with the Covid downturn proving to be no barrier to performance.

View Story

News

Walgreens launches search for innovation through new collaboration with True

Walgreens, America’s best-loved pharmacy, health and beauty company, today announced two innovation challenges in collaboration with True, as part of its ongoing mission to offer the best variety of accessible omnichannel services and products for its customer-base.

View Story

News

True's annual network evening 2018

On 10th October, leaders and innovators from across our Live Network gathered at Sea Containers, London to exchange ideas with the innovators and leaders making waves in the retail and consumer industries. Fever-Tree‘s CEO and co-founder, Tim Warrillow, delivered the keynote, while the founders from the latest startups to join our network, Klydo and Stitched, completed the line-up.

View Story

News

True cycle challenge 2018

In 2018, True hosted its inaugural Cycle Challenge in Mallorca – helping to bring the annual fundraising total for our charitable partner Tommy's to more than £125,000.

View Story