Ex-Walgreens CEO Greg Wasson enters joint venture

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CHICAGO — Former Walgreens Boots Alliance chief executive officer Greg Wasson is part of a joint venture to help Fortune 50 companies take advantage of disruptive technologies with significant market potential.

Wasson Enterprise, a Chicago-based angel investment group founded by Wasson, and Innventure, co-founded by entrepreneur Michael Otworth to commercialize innovative technology, have formed Innventure — a Wasson Enterprise Partnership.

Greg Wasson

Greg Wasson

Besides helping companies evaluate, scale and leverage promising technology, the venture will explore similar relationships with other multinational businesses and institutions to building new, sustainable businesses and transform markets.

The companies said Friday that Wasson will serve as the joint venture’s chairman, and Otworth will take the reins as CEO. Procter & Gamble Co. is the first client partner.

“By partnering with each other in this new joint venture, our two companies are looking forward to accelerating and increasing opportunities with P&G — as well as with other multinationals — to build companies that transform markets,” Wasson said in a statement. “Our systematic value creation would minimize many of the inherent risks common in most startups. Our team has a demonstrated history of innovative entrepreneurship and expertise built on a mission to create transformational companies that can stand the test of time.”

Wasson retired as WBA chief executive in 2015 after a 35-year career at Walgreen Co. Wasson Enterprise has focused its investments on early-stage companies in three sectors: clean and efficient energy innovation, innovative customer and shopping solutions, and health technology.

Otworth has specialized in forming new technology companies and seeing them through to their launches, including the development of go-to-market strategies for businesses built on technology-enabled medical products. With his experience from XL Tech Group in 1996 and Green Ocean Innovation in 2008, he has engaged in disruptive technology-based business development with such companies as P&G, Kraft, Unilever and Eli Lilly, as well as health organizations including the Mayo Clinic and Vanderbilt Medical Center. Along with John Scott, founder of XL Tech Group, Otworth, a created 11 new companies over 20 years, with 10 achieving late-stage funding, including six successful IPOs.

“Part of what makes us unique is that we have developed a highly efficient and proven commercialization model in which we can repeatedly create new companies,” Otworth commented about Innventure — a Wasson Enterprise Partnership. “This allows us to not only create value, but to transform markets through these disruptive technologies.”

Together, the Wasson Enterprise and Innventure will offer complementary expertise focused on “systematic, repeatable value creation,” the companies said.

“We welcome the formation of Innventure – a Wasson Enterprise Partnership, and the complement it represents to P&G’s research and innovation efforts,” stated Neil Jordan, vice president of corporate R&D and P&G Ventures. “Their collective experience positions them well to serve as an important strategic partner to help us scale disruptive technologies and generate shareholder value.”

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