Forking over a billion dollars to acquire a five-year-old company can't come easy.
That's what Unilever did when it purchased Dollar Shave Club last year. Now, the consumer products conglomerate is seeking outside innovation by launching its own co-working space in its Asia-Pacific headquarters in Singapore.
The space, LEVEL3, is an open collaboration area that can host as many as 50 startups and is connected by an open staircase to main Unilever offices.
"Speed of innovation has never been faster," Paul Polman, Unilever's CEO, told a crowd at the opening of the space. "It's confusing a lot of companies. It's confusing a lot of individuals."
"Increasingly, ideas are coming from outside of just the four walls of Unilever," said Jonathan Hammond, who heads the company's platform to engage with startups, Unilever Foundry. "There's a need for us to engage and work with those people from outside Unilever."