Nokia today announced in London a collaborative partnership with Entrepreneur First (www.entrepreneurfirst.org.uk), alongside the UK release of the JobLens app. EF is a London-based non-profit start-up accelerator with multiple sponsors, including BSkyB, Microsoft, Experian and also sports a working partnership with the UK government. Nokia has now hopped aboard and will provide resources to graduate innovators.
The main goal is to build new businesses, especially ones founded on the design, architecture and functionality of Nokia's JobLens app. As well as offering new opportunities, the Finnish manufacturer will also be hosting a contest for universities in the UK with prize money awarded for breakthrough ideas and concepts. Utilising JobLens, Nokia hopes the partnership will launch new companies that result in hiring new workers through the company's services.
This is a unique move for Nokia, tackling a major problem in multiple regions today: unemployment. Vince Cable, UK Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, was joined by City of London's Mark Boleat, Nokia's Bryan Biniak and an executive from Entrepreneur First to kick start the partnership today. As well as presenting the new partnership to the media and graduates, today will be spent with a detailed overview of the JobLens app to the 30 members of the Cohort.
It was confirmed that Nokia will be allowing innovators to build apps using JobLens framework for any platform, but Nokia's own solution will remain exclusive to its own Windows Phones. The group will also meet with representatives from government, education and employment services so they can learn what challenges are faced a mobile app can help them achieve their goals and missions. Here's what Biniak had to say on the partnership:
"Through the Entrepreneur First Cohort, Nokia is honoured and excited to engage some of the most innovative and agile minds in the UK. We want to challenge these young minds to imagine how JobLens can be enhanced and refined to address UK unemployment, a challenge that unfortunately all too many countries are facing."
It will be interesting to see what results this partnership will achieve. We'll be keeping an eye on Nokia's continued investment to further build on the Windows Phone ecosystem.