For the past 3-4 months, I and a couple of my colleagues at the HeadStart Foundation have been involved in creating a framework for formal collaboration between corporates and startups for jointly identifying, pursuing and executing business. The HeadStart Foundation is launching that initiative on the 9th at the HeadStart and Compute 2009 event in Bangalore and we have got 5 companies confirming as launch partners (names to disclose on 9th) and 20 more (evenly split between companies in India and abroad) in discussions.

This collaboration initiative takes the form of both online and offline interaction. The online bit is a simple process – corporates identify areas of interest and issue RFIs, startups and SMEs submit proposals that a team from HeadStart initially filter and then route to designated individuals in partner companies. There is also a process for regular offline interaction and doing reviews of the programme from time to time.

Since this is a new initiative, your views would be appreciated

1. Do you think that such initiatives will help innovation and business ?

2. What do you think are important things to make such an initiative a success ?

3. Where would VCs fit in to all this ? How should we engage investors ?

See you on 9th and 10th for those of you who can make it to Bangalore. Even otherwise, the Startup Saturdays are always there. And the online collaboration platform is an open one, so it will be available from the 9th for startups to join.