Client stories

Building a leading sector specific Corporate VC and Venture Builder

Building new business is the cheapest innovation strategy project

Our partnership with Kiilto began when Riku, Aki and Ville who worked as Coventures' Entrepreneurs-in-Residence assisted Kiilto in validating an internal business idea in the modular building space. Through collaborative brainstorming and Customer Discovery, we navigated market dynamics, gauged demand, and refined the offering to suit the target market.


Rather than going to the market with the initial concept, we pivoted towards a service-first approach. This strategy enabled us to progress rapidly without significant overhead and build the necessary business building blocks in record time. We pivoted the business model using customer discovery, ensured service delivery capabilities, confirmed customers willingness to pay, developed our sales process, crafted a compelling sales narrative along with materials (minimum-viable-brand, proposals, etc.), prospected potential customers, initiated outreach, conducted sales meetings, and ultimately, dispatched proposals.

After three months of hard work, we secured our first paying customer. Working on an actual service was also a great learning experience on how to turn ideas into revenue in record time. We packaged our learnings to create the "Kiilto Discovery Process", which expanded Kiilto’s systematic venture-building capabilities. 

From ventures to a systematic way of building ventures

Our success in turning ideas into new business and the ongoing discussions within our team paved the way to rethink how Kiilto should approach innovation, ventures, and new business building. 

Kiilto already had a venture arm: Kiilto Ventures, established in 2019, which embodies the same entrepreneurial spirit of its century-old 100+ year-old parent company, Kiilto. Since its inception, Kiilto Ventures has championed several investments, such as Betolar, UK-based Kamma, and Origin by Ocean, standing out for their success.


The owners had the ambition to scale up their activities more systematically and Coventures was ready to help in crafting the right model for a more ambitious operation. Leveraging insights from global venture-building models, corporate venturing and top-notch VCs , Coventures worked alongside Kiilto to redefine the blueprint for Kiilto Ventures. Our joint efforts culminated in a strategy that amplifies Kiilto's inherent strengths and differentiates Kiilto Ventures' market position in the VC industry.

Unique to Kiilto Ventures is their exclusive focus on the built environment sector, which is currently responsible for 39% of global energy-related carbon emissions, and how their operational model doubles as a hub for industry experts within Kiilto, external entrepreneurs, and operators to collaboratively and rapidly validate startup ideas and solution hypotheses. Kiilto has around 45 000 B2B customers in construction and 8.4% of Kiiltonians work in R&D, so they have great assets, which they can bring to the table. 

Kiilto is also embracing the trend in the VC industry of providing more active support to founders by developing in-house capabilities for turning ideas into viable businesses. This is highlighted by their incubation capabilities where they run 6-week discovery sprints to validate ideas quickly. Kiilto Ventures aims to be the leading early-stage VC in the Nordic and Baltics for the built environment. Kiilto Ventures invests in and builds startups that work on improving the sustainability and liveability of human-made buildings, structures, and systems.

When the blueprint for Kiilto Ventures was ready, Coventures helped kick-off the operations, but it was paramount to develop Kiilto Ventures' own capabilities to operate. A crucial step here was to recruit a new leader to head the operations, where Coventures was selected to lead the recruitment & headhunt process of finding a new candidate. After a careful recruitment and interview process, Matti Rönkkö was selected as the new Head of Kiilto Ventures. Ville Solja continues to support the operations from the owner's perspective, but now Kiilto Ventures has an independent operating model, which allows it to grow. Kiilto is also building up a network of Entrepreneurs-in-Residence to support them in their journey. Coventures is proud to continue supporting Kiilto in being an access point to the best Entrepreneurs, whenever their venture building efforts need external entrepreneurs.