Emerging Frontiers is an initiative within the Excellis Group. It
comprises emerging ideas, trends and technologies that require an evolutionary approach
for widespread adoption.
Emerging Frontier Initiatives seek to generate benefits across a wide spectrum of
aims and goals. The majority of commercial profits arising from these are reinvested
into generating further enterprise, societal and environmental gains.
The sections below detail our current themes. Moreover, the Emerging Frontiers ideas
bank has a growing pool of over a dozen innovative themes/projects, which are being
assessed for potential future inclusion.
We welcome value-adding partners (corporates and social organisations, as well as
individuals or experts in their fields) from around the world to collaborate or
link-up in the Emerging Frontiers Initiatives (EFIs). To find out more, or to register
your interest or offer suggestions, please contact us.
Opportunity SME Observatory (OSMEO)
Opportunity SME Observatory (OSMEO) is an ambitious and innovative programme for promoting excellence in publicly funded projects.
Commercial Driver & Rational for OSMEO
As part of Excellis’ Emerging Frontier initiative, the planned duration
of OSMEO Phase 1 is three years. During this period, OSMEO will provide an independent
and transparent assessment on the effectiveness and impact of various publicly funded
projects aiming to support micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
Through regular monitoring, consultation and solicitation of opinions, OSMEO aims
to establish a constructive dialogue with the key stakeholders and the wider business
community. Thereby, garnering excellence and optimum return on investment from publicly
Since OSMEO will not rely on any public funds, it will be able to assert its full
independence and represent the true voice of the various stakeholders involved in
publicly funded projects.
The initial scope of OSMEO will be London (UK) wide; covering ongoing and future
projects, as well as those completed within the last three years. It will also include
national programmes that have a significant bearing on London based organisations.
It is envisaged that future phases will extend OSMEO to become a UK nationwide initiative,
with a view to extending it even further to the rest of the European Union.
SME-facing programmes across all industry sectors will be considered by OSMEO. Sectors
of strategic importance will be given initial priority, and these would include
high-technology manufacturing (including aerospace), creative industries, healthcare,
food and hospitality, retail, ICT (including video games) as well as cross-cutting
OSMEO Goals and Objectives
OSMEO is utilising a flexible and transparent methodology in order to ensure a high
degree of stakeholder engagement, as well as adaptability to any future changes
in public policies and funding instruments. Initially, the main goals of OSMEO will
- Redefinition and realignment of what constitutes ‘Value for Money’ in publicly funded
projects and programmes aimed at SMEs.
- How, and to what extent, publicly funded programmes complement or synergise with
the wider policy goals, objectives and aspirations of the citizens and policy makers.
For example, EU
2020 (Lisbon Strategy), The Big Society (UK), etc.
- Ensuring that the target SMEs or SME groups who are purported to be the end-beneficiaries
of publicly-funded programmes are actually deriving real, tangible and lasting benefits
from such programmes.
Additional goals of OSMEO would include:
- Best practice guidelines for ensuring 100% impartial and independent interim and
post project evaluations. For example, assessment of publicly funded projects (especially
ERDF, ESF) that are (or have been) evaluated by self-selected evaluators, albeit
through a public tendering process.
- Ensuring that procurement practices that are actually adopted by publicly funded
SME programmes are fair and equitable, and provide equal opportunity to all suppliers
(particularly SMEs), and not just the preferred or predetermined ones.
Publicly-funded stakeholders who wish to contribute, collaborate or offer suggestions
on OSMEO may contact us.
Emerging Ideas, Trends and Models
Emerging Ideas, Trends and Models focus on exploring and market-testing new ideas,
practical approaches, technologies and business models for assisting enterprises;
as well as providing an independent vehicle for addressing specific industry related
issues in a holistic manner.
Initiative: Innovate with Web2i
Innovate with Web2i provides a framework for developing new and
innovative business models. It uses a methodical and holistic approach to establishing
a synergistic business eco-system consisting of "service + solution + business network"
The demonstrable benefits of the Innovate with Web2i approach include
low-risk, high-affordability, and rapid access to emerging technology capability.
In addition, members of the ecosystem are able to adopt new business models for
their own marketing, business networking and sales channel consolidation or diversification.
Our goal for the Innovate with Web2i initiative is to catalyse
key changes at the industry level, whilst recognising that such a large scale and
high complexity of change presents opportunities, challenges and risks that are
not normally encountered in organisation-level transformation initiatives.
Web2i Case Study in Designer/Luxury Fashion
The highly creative, dynamic and competitive nature of the designer/luxury fashion
industry presents a unique set of challenges (including environmental and fair trade),
which have not been previously addressed for various technical, cultural and logistical
In particular, brand development and online retailing are still prevailing challenges
for emerging and independent designers (mostly SMEs). Even the more established
designer brands are experiencing significant cost pressures within their operations
and supply chains, as well as from the global competition.
Achieving Wider Impact
As an exemplar of user-centered innovation, our work in this area continues to stimulate
a host of other initiatives and complements many others. For example:
- EU 2010 Consultation Green Paper:
Unlocking the potential of cultural and creative industries, a multi-stakeholder
consultation by the European Commission's Education and Culture Directorate-General.
- The 2008 global eco-fashion competition and sponsorship organised jointly by Cartier, McKinsey & Company, and INSEAD; as well as a fresh crop of 'social fashion'
(and even interior designer) websites.
Diversity in Workplace
Workplace diversity within companies is associated with policies and practices designed
to recruit, retain, and develop employees from diverse social groups and backgrounds
rather than relying upon a very narrow section of the labour market, and opening
up new and emerging markets that also exploit diverse opportunities.