The pitch, which will take place in MAD//Fest’ ‘House of Innovation’, is tasked with identifying technology that can help Boots “better understand the needs of customers, customising products and services and connecting consumers to Boots stores.”

The MAD//Fest pitch is the latest attempt by Boots to step up its personalisation drive. The firm has launched a series of initiatives and investments designed to enhance personalisation in-store and unlock value from its first party data. In February, Boots announced a deal with InfoSum “to target audiences across media partners in a privacy-safe way - without sharing or moving any data.”

This year’s MAD//Fest will see some of the world’s top brands provide briefs as MAD//Fest’s House of Innovation start-up partners pitch for the chance to secure pilots and deliver innovative solutions to real brand challenges. The pitches, which are being run by Co:Cubed and are exclusively available to start-ups exhibiting in MAD//Fest’s House of Innovation, are collectively worth £120k and form the backbone of the innovation-focused content.

Also targeting personalisation solutions at MAD//Fest is global brewing giant AB InBev. AB InBev’s £20k brief will focus on innovation that helps to drive repeat purchases.

“MAD//Fest’s ‘House of Innovation’ is the place to discover new start-ups and see how they can address the real challenges of the world’s top brands. We’re thrilled to extend our partnership with Boots and use MAD//Fest as a platform to support the brand’s personalisation drive,” said Dan Brain, MAD//Fest London’s Co-founder. 

“Boots has stepped up its focus on personalisation experiences and unlocking value in first party data. Start-ups are clearly an important part of the solution and it’s fantastic to see the world’s top brands open their minds to the growth potential of collaborative innovation. I can’t wait to see headaches resolved and opportunities secured as start-ups and brands forge new alliances at MAD//Fest,” said Jeremy Basset, Co:Cubed’s FOunder and CEO.

Over 7,000 brands and agencies are expected to attend MAD//Fest London 2022, 3,000 more than 2021 when MAD//Fest was the only UK industry festival to take place in physical form.  Other speakers for the 2022 edition include Rachel Waller, Global VP Innovation, Burberry; Cristina Diezhandino, Global CMO, Diageo; Tina Koehler, Global VP Marketing, Deliveroo; James Brown, MD, BrewDog; and Sir Martin Sorrell, Founder & CEO, S4 Capital.

Earlybird tickets are available here.