Open Innovation and Interconnectivity Manager (EU) - £Negotiable

Our ideal candidate will need a willingness to travel as needed to engage with innovation partners and stakeholders

Key Responsibilities:

  • External Collaboration: Cultivate and maintain relationships with external partners, including suppliers, contract manufacturers, innovation houses, start-ups, and individual inventors in the EU region.
  • Innovation Scouting: Proactively identify, evaluate, and integrate breakthrough innovations from external sources in EU that align with 's strategic objectives at the global level.
  • Turn-Key Solution Development: Partner with R&D and cross-functional teams to develop and implement turn-key solutions that drive product and process innovation.
  • Open Innovation Strategy: Modernize existing OI practices and introduce new OI best practices across all R&D and business functions.
  • Portfolio Management: Own and manage the portfolio of OI initiatives, ensuring alignment with the company's broader R&D and strategic goals.
  • Stakeholder Engagement: Collaborate with cross-functional teams, including Quality, GMS, Procurement, Packaging, Product Development and Legal, to streamline the innovation process.
  • Partnership Management: Actively manage several high impact partnerships in line with our Global R&D Strategy.
  • Program Management: Ensure that the Open Innovation program is implemented in the EU region and ecosystem with consistent principles and best practices.
  • Reporting: Regularly update the US-based Senior Director of Open Innovation and Interconnectivity on progress, challenges, and opportunities in the European OI landscape.

Experience Required:

  • Bachelor’s/master’s degree in chemical engineering/chemistry/Life Sciences with 10+ years of FMCG industry experience. Advanced degrees, Ph.D. or MBA preferred.
  • Extensive experience in R&D management, preferably in the FMCG sector.
  • Proven track record in Open Innovation, with a strong network in the European innovation ecosystem.
  • Ability to navigate and collaborate with external commercial partners, ensuring alignment with organizational goals.
  • Strong analytical skills with the ability to evaluate and integrate external innovations seamlessly.
  • Strong interpersonal and negotiation skills. Proficient in IP management.
  • Exceptional communication skills, with proficiency in multiple European languages being a plus.
  • Willingness to travel as needed to engage with innovation partners and stakeholders.

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