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At World Innovation Forum, Young Entrepreneurs Provide Key to Innovation

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For big companies and government agencies looking for innovative solutions to dire problems, what's one key resource they ought to consider tapping? Young entrepreneurs. This was the main takeaway in a presentation led by the founder of student entrepreneur organization Kairos Society Ankur Jain at the World Innovation Forum yesterday.

Addressing an audience of executives from companies like Johnson & Johnson and Nestlé, Jain spoke about the need to break down barriers between established companies and entrepreneurs in order to produce innovative results at a much quicker speed.

"If we can take a big challenge, give it to the next generation, let these creative minds come up with  new way of doing things and then marry it back to the companies, I think this is the only way we will be able to keep up with the pace of technology," says Jain, who is a young entrepreneur in his own right.

To demonstrate his point, Jain talked about Johnson & Johnson turning to millennial entrepreneurs to help find a solution for access to medical professionals. In a short time, students between the ages of 18 and 23 developed an on-call service for consumers looking to connect with doctors, emergency medical technicians and nurses at a moment's notice. It's like the Uber for doctors, says Jain.

Related: How Entrepreneurs Push for Innovation, One Pocket at a Time

Jain proceeded to bring out a mix of young entrepreneurs wanting to provide a global impact by disrupting established industries, one being CEO and chairman of BPG Werks Benjamin Gulak.

Looking to reinvigorate the dying power sports industry (think snowmobiles and ATVs), Gulak developed a product called the Shredder – a motorcross-like skateboard. Since its launch a month ago, Gulak has 6,000 presales from avid fans. Besides looking to provide consumers another powerful toy, Gulak has been in talks with the military to use this device for carrying heavy gear on tours. Because the Shredder can hold up to 800 pounds, soldiers would be able to put items on the device and have it drive next to them.

Also taking the stage was the co-founder of Seat-e Ines Gaisset. Gaisset is part of the smart city initiative, a movement looking for innovative solutions to urban area problems, one being energy. Gaisset developed Seat-e, a solar panel outdoor bench that provides Wi-Fi access, along with the capability to charge all your electronic devices for free by way of renewable energy. Besides providing a service for city dwellers, Seat-e will also provide information about air quality, energy and other data, hoping people will become more aware of their actions and how it affects the environment.

Related: 4 Ways to Build a Culture of Innovation at Your Startup

Jain hopes by opening up the lines of communication between large entities needing to solve problems and enthusiastic young entrepreneurs, our society will be able to solve major issues at a much greater speed.

"By creating this partnership of industry today and entrepreneurship around the world we can bring fascinating solutions to market fast and keep up to date with this exponential growth in technology."

What other ways have you seen young entrepreneurs provide innovation to large companies and organizations? Let us know in the comments below.


Andrea Huspeni

Written By

Andrea Huspeni is the former special projects director at and the founder of This Dog's Life.