Emerging innovation is on the agenda at MAD//Fest London at The Old Truman Brewery on 7-8 July as 30 start-ups compete for £100k of pilot briefs from M&S, Pizza Hut, Reckitt, Boots and Diageo.

The line-up for the pitches has now been revealed:

Diageo: The future of digital commerce
As one of the world’s largest distillers, Diageo is looking for partners and technologies that can enable their brands to create world-leading digital commerce experiences.  Diageo is looking for solutions that will help their brands to create more personalised, relevant and value adding experiences, ultimately resulting in higher shopper satisfaction and conversion. Diageo is not only looking at the e-commerce solutions of the future but at all digital purchasing options for their brands, from D2C to omni-channel journeys like click and collect, on-demand, quick commerce, voice commerce or digital commerce business models. 

The finalists are:

M&S: Turning social buzz, listening and engagement into commercial value
M&S is interested in how it can turn social buzz, listening and engagement into commercial value in clothing and home. The much-loved retailer is thinking about how to create a more fleet-of-foot approach to its product range and be more reactive to social context. Being able to turn that sentiment into commercial value by impacting M&S' go-to-market plans or even its product ranges could be a game-changer.

The finalists are:
Fluid Ads


Reckitt: Harnessing power of digital to break the chain of infection
Protecting people from illness by establishing better hygiene practices as a foundation for health is core to Reckitt's purpose. Our brands, such as Dettol and Lysol, are built on trust, scientific efficacy and our desire to educate consumers around the world to break the chain of infection. We’re looking for partners who can help us harness the power of digital and social technology to find new ways to educate consumers on how to keep themselves and their loved ones illness-free.

The finalists are:
Picnic Media

Pizza Hut: How to stay relevant and create a buzz in a highly competitive market?
How can Pizza Hut stay relevant and create a buzz in the very fast paced and highly competitive Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) sector? More than 60 years after it launched, Pizza Hut is still one of the most recognisable QSR’s in cities worldwide. But how can the brand generate the awareness and buzz it needs to remain front-of-mind in the face of intense competition? Pizza Hut is looking for innovations that will tap into society and culture and boost customer experience, recognition and positive sentiment. Can you help Pizza Hut become the most talked about food service brand in the market?


Walgreens Boots Alliance: How Boots can boost one-to-one engagement
Boots is constantly looking to cater to consumers' health-care needs on a more one-to-one basis. Boots is looking to leverage technology that can deliver more personalised healthcare to its customers. They are interested in tools that help the business better understand the needs of customers, customising products & services and connecting consumers to Boots stores. Ultimately Boots wants to connect customers to people who can support their health & wellbeing ambitions.
The finalists are:
The Room

Hosted by Co:Cubed Founder & CEO Jeremy Basset, the pitches will take place in MAD//Fest’s ‘House of Innovation’ over the 7-8 July. Each pitch winner will receive a £20k pilot with the brand. The judges for pitches are Rakesh Narayana, Global Head of Ventures, Reckitt, Marni Allen, Director, Consumer Healthcare Future, Walgreens Boots Alliance, Catriona Woodward,Head of Digital Marketing, Benni Lickfett, Global Head of Emerging Technology & Innovation and Stuart Ramage, Head of Digital Strategy & innovation, M&S.

The individual pitch winners will also have the chance to pitch for MAD//Fest London’s ‘Champion of Champions’ innovation award on 8 July. The victor will be selected by the MAD//Fest audience and receive free exhibition space at MAD//Fest London 2022 as well as a free subscription to ALF Insight, who are sponsoring the PITCH//IT initiative at MAD//Fest.

“MAD//Fest London’s House of Innovation is the place to be if you’re looking to see how innovation can address the challenges of major brands next week. The format is the perfect way to keep your finger on the pulse of innovation and discover what’s now, new and next in martech, adtech and digital technology. We’re also excited to put the decision for our ‘Champion of Champions’ award in the hands of MAD//Fest attendees,” said Dan Brain, MAD//Fest London’s Co-founder.

4,000 attendees are expected to attend MAD//Fest London and over 150 industry leaders will tackle 2021’s theme, ‘Where Do We Go From Here?’ Speakers include Broadcaster June Sarpong OBE, S4 Capital Executive Chairman Sir Martin Sorrell, Ogilvy Vice-chair Rory Sutherland, Dishoom co-founder Shamil Thakrar, Facebook VP EMEA Nicola Mendelsohn CBE, Resi Founder Alexandra Depledge MBE and Boots CMO Pete Markey.

In-person tickets for MAD//Fest London are sold out. Virtual tickets are available here.