5 Minutes with brand-tech connector Ken Valledy

This week's ad:tech themed '5 minutes with' features Ken Valledy CEO and co-founder of Tech2Brand.

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Who are you and what do you do?

My name is Ken Valledy, CEO and co-founder of Tech2Brand. Tech2brand focuses on connecting new start-up tech innovation to brands.

How did you get into what you do now?

For 99% of my career I have been a corporate brand marketing guy. My last company was ABInBev, where I help many roles from UK Brand Director for Beck’s Beer to Consumer Connections Director for Western Europe. A few years ago, while at a start-up event with The Bakery, I was introduced to numerous great start-ups. Initially, I felt very excited, this was then replaced by a deep feeling of guilt, (I should have known more about the start-up scene than I did)

Upon further investigation, I realised that there was a huge gap between the start-up world and the brand and agency world.. All 3 parties should work with each other, but there wasn’t a clear process available to either side. Hence the seed for tech2Brand was placed in my head. I left ABInbev after 13 years in December 2013 to start out on this new journey (mission) to create a ‘virtual bridge’ to help more start-ups connect with brands / agencies and visa versa.

What gets you up in the morning?

A head full of new ideas / things to do in that day

What’s been keeping you busy lately?

Meeting client briefs, writing my blog, attending panels and meeting loads of great start-ups. All good fun.

What’s your favourite aspect of what you do?

100% variety on a daily basis. Mixing with the start-up community is very inspiring and rewarding. I also don’t miss the politics of my previous corporate life.

What are you looking forward to during ad:tech?

The buzz and anticipation that comes with the Next Big Thing competition…..

What advice would you give start-ups wanting to work with you/big brands?

Be realistic (you won’t get paid a huge amount at the start),  be patient (things take time), but overall, enjoy the experience (you will learn a lot to help you for your next brand opportunity)

What is the one thing start-ups should never do?

Avoid trying to be something to everyone. I am a big believer in focus, know your target audience and know what problem you are solving for them.

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