Alberto Prado

Alberto Prado

Vice President and Global Head of Digital & Partnership for R&D at Unilever

Short Biography

Alberto is the Global Head Digital & Partnerships at Unilever R&D. He leads the Digital Transformation of R&D towards the “Lab of the Future” by introducing digital tools, maximising the use of data and AI for scientific discovery, process engineering and new business models.    

He also leads external ecosystem engagements, including the Unilever Foundry, with the purpose of accelerating breakthrough innovation through innovative collaboration models.    Prior to Unilever, Alberto set up and led the Digital Innovation Accelerator at Royal Philips, with the mission to boost disruptive innovation and fuel a culture of intrapreneurship. This included partnering cross-functionally with internal and external teams to define, test and validate next-generation healthcare solutions and business models, leading to new business creation opportunities. During that period, he also chaired the AI Council to provide oversight and steer to company-wide AI-related investments in innovation. Previously, he created and led the Digital Innovation Program in the Consumer Division, initiating a fundamental transformation in traditional innovation practices that delivered the first wave of Philips connected products (IoT).    

Alberto started his professional career as a management consultant with mobile operator start-ups across Europe and Asia. He then joined NEC Europe, driving Strategy and Product Planning of their mobile handset division. Later he joined Symbian Software as Vice President of Global Product Management, responsible for the product strategy, investment allocation and roadmap of the market-leading mobile Operating System of the time. After the acquisition of Symbian by Nokia, Alberto was involved in setting up the Symbian Foundation which became the vehicle to open source the Symbian code. He subsequently joined Nokia as Head of R&D strategy where he led the development of a new software platform and solutions strategy.    

Alberto graduated in Engineering and Economics at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Germany) and holds an MBA from INSEAD (France). He is a regular speaker at industry events and media.

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