A combined 30 years at Leo Burnett gave Listen's team a unique opportunity to work on some of the world's most recognized brands. They also experienced the dynamism of creating and launching new brands while working with a major client's innovations group.
As exciting as this was, Jeff Cantalupo sensed there was more....
In 2010, he found out just how much more. The Chicago startup scene was gaining momentum. Ideas everywhere. Imaginative, inspiring ideas. However, many startups were focused more on perfecting the function of their product vs. packaging and launching a brand. Observing this, Jeff had an inspiration of his own...
"instead of helping big brands innovate, why not partner with innovators to help them build big brands?"
Brand + Capital
Recognizing the best results come when both parties have a financial stake in the business, Jeff knew he needed to build more than just a branding agency. So in 2010 he launched Listen as a value add venture firm to invest both capital and brand expertise into its portfolio companies. This model creates a true vested interest in the success of each brand.