Newcastle-headquartered technology consultancy hedgehog lab is to offer global paints and coatings organisation AkzoNobel their innovation expertise over an extended period as part of a new partnership between the two companies.
The agreement will initially see hedgehog lab work to provide AkzoNobel with a proof of concept for a project in shipping logistics.
The partnership serves as a formalisation of a relationship which has been developing since July 2016, when the companies first linked up with AkzoNobel’s Yacht division to refresh their mobile offerings.
Following this work, the companies connected to conduct broader innovation exercises, providing the Amsterdam-based company with an insight into how different technologies could help them solve issues often faced by their customers.
Kevin Robson, Head of Strategic Accounts at hedgehog lab, said:
“We’re elated to have welcomed AkzoNobel as a partner. As the organiser of the region’s leading regular innovation event, it is something that we are genuinely passionate about.
“The news provides further evidence to support the notion that we’re not only a leader in the field, but an organisation accomplished in assisting renowned brands in enabling innovation.
“AkzoNobel become our second innovation partner this year, following on from an agreement with Northumbrian Water Group back in February. It’s very encouraging for us to see the trust that brands who are so influential in their markets have in our talented team.
“It also comes at an exciting time for us. Having announced an expansion into the production of AI solutions last month, we’re building our skill base and subsequently our capacity to deliver for partners.”
Richie Ramsden, Head of Data Science in AkzoNobel’s Data Insights Team, said:
“We’re excited to see what our partnership with hedgehog lab will bring. Ultimately, our innovation incubator has a remit of delivering added value to customers. We’re eager to see how an official partnership will help us do so.
“Our first project is of particular interest, as we believe it is an idea that could genuinely help transform an entire sector. The idea we’re exploring would be of particular interest to boat owners, helping them solve a major problem that all face at some point or another.
“As a company, we’ve always been open to receiving support throughout our value chain. This agreement is another example of that and demonstrates our continued dedication to improving the offerings we provide the market.”