Sonae's investment in innovation, research and development exceeded 100 million euros in 2018. The group has developed more than 1,000 projects worldwide, maintaining its strategic focus on innovation in 2018.
According to the report "Book of Innovation of Retail 2018", edited by the tenth year, Sonae continued to develop an open innovation policy, counting today as a diversified open innovation network, working with 429 partners in 34 countries on four continents. Sonae's innovation partners include universities, research and development centers, companies, startups, incubators and accelerators, suppliers and institutions in a wide range of fields.
Catarina Oliveira Fernandes, Director of Communication, Brand and Corporate Responsibility at Sonae, believes that "diversity and multidisciplinarity are key to innovation. That is why we invest in people who are at the heart of our innovation strategy and we seek to build partnerships that enhance our ability to innovate, by stimulating knowledge sharing and developing initiatives through network cooperation. " According to Catarina Oliveira Fernandes, the strategy "has benefited not only the specialization of the teams, but also the growth opportunities of Sonae's retail businesses, which have strengthened their leadership positions in the last year."
In a statement, Sonae also said that the innovations developed and implemented allowed the retail business to strengthen its sustainability, increase sales, reduce costs and save time spent in various processes.
The more than 50 innovations in the 2018 Innovation Book include a number of projects that use technology as a facilitator of business processes. Among them, Sonae highlights the Customer Feedback app, the Smart Continente app and Worten's Improve Your Game project.