Food industry blogger Dan Mitchell is not impressed:
Kellogg Might Pay You a Paltry Sum for Your Ideas. Or Not.Mitchell’s point is that Kellogg wants these ideas cheap — it’s willing to pay a small amount (maybe) for some ideas and nothing for other ideas.
By Dan Mitchell
October 13th, 2008 @ 3:12 pm
Kellogg has never scrimped on research and development. Its W.K. Kellogg Institute for Food and Nutrition Research is considered to be among the best research facilities in the corporate world. The company spent $179 million on R&D last year.
But Kellogg can always use some new ideas. So it is asking you for yours.
To me, it looks like Kellogg is really looking to stimulate user innovation — the self-revealing that Eric von Hippel argues is essential for firms to learn what their users are thinking.
So Mitchell is right — no commercial firm in its right mind would sell its ideas for these kind of sums. But perhaps users — lacking other ways to commercialize their ideas — would be willing to share their insights in exchange for a nominal incentive payment.
Update Nov. 24: Kellogg's has posted a comment (below) that clarifies its position. Here’s the money quote:
Kellogg will work directly with the individuals and businesses whose proposals have intellectual property protection (patents or copyrights) to negotiate the appropriate compensation for these innovations.