ASIA – Coca-Cola Amatil, one of the largest bottlers of non-alcoholic ready-to-drink beverages in the Asia-Pacific region has launched a new program, Amatil X aimed at developing of start-ups, emerging business and identify innovative product concepts.

This forms part of its accelerator programs to enhance growth out of its core beverage businesses.

To foster growth while ensuring sustainable development, the company has established AX Ventures, a multimillion-dollar investment corporate venturing programme charged to identify and invest in promising companies.

It has also unveiled two programs that will run parallel with the investment – ‘Xcelerate’ and ‘Xponential’ – mandated to validate ideas capable of improving the customer experience or create new revenue streams.

The company in collaboration with start-up accelerator BlueChilli will be accepting applications for the Xcelerate programme from entrepreneurs and emerging businesses from Australia and New Zealand.

On the other hand, the Xponential programme is an employee-venturing programme, meant to empower employees within Coca-Cola Amatil and identify new opportunities through innovations.

“We want to continue to challenge ourselves to provide our customers with ‘Only at Amatil’ experiences.

“Our team has been examining rapidly evolving companies across various sectors in Australia and overseas for the past six months.

“The result is Amatil X. Our aspiration is for Amatil X to set the benchmark for how to bridge the gap between large established corporations and the agility and innovation of start-up businesses, so that we leverage entrepreneurs to help fuel our growth agenda,” said Alison Watkins, Coca-Cola Amatil group managing director.

He added that this was a new avenue for growth and the investment moves along changing consumer trends and expectations driven by technology in the beverage sector.

To guarantee future growth, the company is supporting start-up businesses by safeguarding community ecosystem and the Australian and New Zealand economies.