With a Thirst for the Future: Collaborations at Capgemini’s Applied Innovation Exchange

ISSUE #65 – Shinichi Tonomura (pictured below), Managing Director, Capgemini Financial Services, Asia, Middle East and Japan, discusses the company’s start-up origins, innovations, ambitions, and how it continues to collaborate with the start-up ecosystem.


Capgemini started as a start-up 50 years ago and is today an MNC with nearly 200,000 people in over 40 countries. Could you tell us more about this journey?

Capgemini’s growth journey has been vibrant and unpredictable with over 40 acquisitions and offices in over 40 countries crossing various cultures. This has been driven in large part by its organisational model, invented by its founder, Serge Kampf, who started the company in a two-bedroom apartment in 1967 in Grenoble.

As decentralised as possible, this model transcends differences and respects everyone involved in this shared adventure. We are focused on living the future: by mobilising new skills, creating new businesses, utilising the most advanced technologies or anticipating the future needs of businesses.

Our team members approach the future with boldness, enthusiasm and a genuine thirst and it is with this mindset that they push to grow and drive progress for clients. Thanks to its employees, the Group maintains its visionary spirit that pushes it to continually innovate and help its clients advance. Capgemini’s past, present and future activity was, remains and will always be driven by a “thirst for the future.”

Reviewing our history provides a chance to retrace the major technological evolutions of the past 50 years.  At every step in our history, our projects have accompanied our clients in adapting to a new era, by addressing new and often pioneering issues.

Each of our example projects tells a story of technological conquest to accompany the changes impacting our world (real time, dematerialisation, cybersecurity, evolution of payment methods, factory of the future, virtual reality, etc.). These projects demonstrate the breadth of Capgemini’s businesses, while highlighting the business challenges we will face in the years to come, as we continue on a journey that began 50 years ago.


 How does Capgemini collaborate with the start-up ecosystem?

We believe that the start-up ecosystem is one of the key pillars of innovation. Leveraging our culture of applied innovation, Capgemini helps organisations identify new business opportunities to cater to both local and global markets, through the Applied Innovation Exchange (AIE).

The AIE offers pragmatic tools and insights to help enterprises achieve competitive edge amid digital disruption, while encouraging a dynamic, authentic, and sustainable culture of innovation. Capgemini’s AIE favours an angle that seeks to drive corporate innovation and connect the demand from corporations for customised cutting-edge technologies with the supply from start-ups and academic institutions. We do not claim to have every solution, but by finding the right start-ups and making the right connections, clients get a focused business initiative, not simply taking a technology junket to Silicon Valley.

The aim is to deliver concrete results supported by new connections between emerging technology start-ups and long-standing Capgemini clients. By working with Capgemini, start-ups can enjoy access to a much broader innovation ecosystem, including other start-ups, accelerators, incubators, strategic technology and business partners and nine other exchanges worldwide.



Are there any interesting projects in the AIE in Singapore that you might be able to share with us?

There are a few but one of the more interesting projects is a Smart Analytics solution tailored to banks for them to understand their customers from a 720-degree view. This includes their social media profile, thereby connecting customers through the right touch points to enable better social customers’ service. We are also in the midst of devising a digital pop-up store concept for a retail client, and building a chatbot for a telecommunications company to provide 24/7 support to customers.

Additionally, through our Accelerated Solutions Environment workshops, we create design-thinking immersive experiences to help our clients develop a roadmap of their innovation strategy to resolve complex business problem.

Lastly, we are organising a quarterly speaking series, What’s Now: Singapore, where we gather a diverse group of innovators for an evening of discussion and networking that highlights the most important innovations emerging in Singapore.



Interview with Shinichi Tonomura, Managing Director, Capgemini Financial Services, Asia, Middle East and Japan

Published in FOCUS Magazine — Issue #1 2018 “Ready? Start-Up. Go!”


Discover also Capgemini’s activities on the Smart Health platform