Joseph Jaffe Launches New Agency, “Evol8tion,” Bringing Together Brands and Startups

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Innovation agency looks to fuse worlds of Madison Avenue and Mountain View to “reverse engineer” the startup

Thought Leader, Author and Entrepreneur Joseph Jaffe, today announced the launch of his new company, Evol8tion, LLC (http://www.startupsforbrands.com).

Evol8tion is an innovation agency that matches early stage startups to blue chip brands to partner via mentoring, pilot programs and/or investment. Evol8tion aims to change the way brands work with technology-based startups via early stage participation with early stage ventures.

Evol8tion is Jaffe’s latest breakthrough for the marketing world, following his firm, crayon, one of the industry’s first social media agencies, which was acquired by Powered, and again by Dachis Group. Before that, Jaffe was Director of Interactive Media at TBWA/Chiat/Day and OMD USA. He is also a three time author of best selling books, hosts a blog and audio podcast, "Jaffe Juice,” and a video show called Jaffe Juice TV.

“The startup lives in the epicenter of technology-inspired innovation,” said Jaffe. “But brands are often not brought into the picture until the startup is so far downstream in the process that it’s too late to influence direction, partner or truly innovate.”

“Startups are dominated by technology and finance, but instead of ending on Madison Avenue’s doorstep, what if we began with the business problem, brand truth, and consumer insight, and worked backward into development and funding?” added Jaffe. “We believe that by collaborating upstream, significant learnings, growth and accelerated pathways to success will be inevitably realized.”

With its first branded product called “MatchMaker,” Evol8tion will represent viable startups and help them find their “brand soul mate.” Using a proprietary database of categorized early stage startups, Evol8tion will make introductions to its client base of brands and present a suite of participation opportunities, including - but not limited to – mentoring, pilot programs and even investment. On board already are two blue chip companies that will serve as launch partners, Kraft Foods and Anheuser-Busch InBev.

“Innovation is no longer a nice to have for brands, it's now become imperative to stimulate a deeper and more meaningful connection with consumers,” said Ed Kaczmarek, Director of Innovation, Consumer Experiences at Kraft Foods. “We’ve been doing just that with initiatives like our iFood Assistant and Big Fork Little Fork apps, as well as our partnerships with Intel and Shopkick. Through our collaboration with Evol8tion, we are looking to accelerate our innovation pipeline even further.”

“Innovation has been long thought of as a function of product development, packaging and distribution,” says Maarten Albarda, Vice President of Global Connections at ABInBev. “We are excited to demonstrate that innovation can and should include marketing itself in its wheelhouse.”

“This is – simply put – an efficiency and effectiveness 1-2 punch,” explained Jaffe. “Move from being media dependent to media discerning with significantly less waste, whilst simultaneously attempting to build the “better mousetrap.”

The bridge between Madison Avenue and Mountain View is literally represented by a thought leadership portal and community hub of the same name (http://www.madisonandmountainview.com), which will contain interviews, profiles, guest posts, research and much more focusing on the fusion between advertising and technology. Madisonandmountainview.com also launches today as an independent and standalone platform.

Interested brands, startups and partners can visit http://www.startupsforbrands.com to find out more, read the manifesto and view the vision videos (also available on http://www.youtube.com/mplusmv)

About Evol8tion, LLC:

Evol8tion, LLC is an innovation agency that attempts to put brands back in control by reverse engineering the startup to create technology solutions to business problems. Through its MatchMaker™ offering, Evol8tion matches early stage startups with established brands to partner via mentoring, pilot programs and/or investment. Find out more at http://www.startupsforbrands.com or @Evol8tion

About Anheuser-Busch InBev:

Anheuser-Busch InBev is the leading global brewer and one of the world's top five consumer products companies. A true consumer-centric, sales driven organization, AB InBev manages a portfolio of well over 200 beer brands that includes global flagship brands Budweiser®, Stella Artois® and Beck’s®, fast growing multi-country brands like Leffe® and Hoegaarden®, and strong “local champions” such as Bud Light®, Skol®, Brahma®, Quilmes®, Michelob®, Harbin®, Sedrin®, Klinskoye®, Sibirskaya Korona®, Chernigivske®, and Jupiler®, among others. In addition, the company owns a 50 percent equity interest in the operating subsidiary of Grupo Modelo, Mexico's leading brewer and owner of the global Corona® brand.

AB InBev’s dedication to heritage and quality is rooted in brewing traditions that originate from the Den Hoorn brewery in Leuven, Belgium, dating back to 1366 and the pioneering spirit of the Anheuser & Co brewery, which traces its origins back to 1852 in St. Louis, USA.

Geographically diversified with a balanced exposure to developed and developing markets, AB InBev leverages the collective strengths of its approximately 114 000 employees based in operations in 23 countries across the world.

The company strives to be the Best Beer Company in a Better World.
In 2010, AB InBev realized 36.3 billion US dollar revenue.

About Kraft Foods:

Kraft Foods Inc. is a global snacks powerhouse with an unrivaled portfolio of brands people love. Proudly marketing delicious biscuits, confectionery, beverages, cheese, grocery products and convenient meals in approximately 170 countries, Kraft Foods had 2010 revenue of $49.2 billion. Twelve of the company’s iconic brands – Cadbury, Jacobs, Kraft, LU, Maxwell House, Milka, Nabisco, Oreo, Oscar Mayer, Philadelphia, Tang and Trident – generate revenue of more than $1 billion annually. On Aug. 4, 2011, Kraft Foods announced plans to divide and create two independent public companies: a high-growth global snacks business and a high-margin North American grocery business. The transaction is expected to be completed before the end of 2012. Visit http://www.kraftfoodscompany.com and http://www.facebook.com/kraftfoodscorporate.

About Joseph Jaffe:

One of the most sought-after consultants, speakers and thought leaders on marketing innovation, new media and social media, Joseph Jaffe is founder and partner of Evol8tion, LLC, an innovation agency, focusing on fusing the worlds of Madison Avenue and Mountain View to create startups for brands.

Prior to launching Evol8tion, Joseph founded and ran a strategic consultancy, crayon, until it was acquired by Powered in January of 2010. Before that, Joseph was Director of Interactive Media at TBWA/Chiat/Day and OMD USA, where he worked on Kmart, ABSOLUT Vodka, Embassy Suites and Samsonite.

Jaffe is author of three best selling books: Life after the 30-second spot, Join the Conversation and Flip the Funnel. His popular blog and audio podcast, "Jaffe Juice”, provides daily and weekly commentary respectively on all things new marketing. You can join the conversation at http://www.jaffejuice.com. He also has a video show called Jaffe Juice TV (http://www.jaffejuice.tv)

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Laura Beck
Evol8tion
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