You are here: Home Newsroom Features Boots UK supports Hackathon event led by Ogilvy and IBM to address the nations Healthcare

Boots UK supports Hackathon event led by Ogilvy and IBM to address the nations Healthcare

18 May 2017
Feature Brand

Ogilvy and IBM co-host a three-day hackathon with leading UK brands, to tackle some of the country’s most pressing health and wellness challenges.


Ogilvy and IBM are hosting a three-day hackathon at Sea Containers, which will harness a cutting edge combination of creative and tech talent to help consumers around the universal theme of health and wellness. In 2017 alone, healthcare spending in the UK is budgeted at over £140 billion with the global market for connected healthcare set to reach £37 billion in 2020.

Ogilvy and IBM have been strategic partners for over two decades, forging a relationship of shared inspiration and growth for brands throughout the world. The hack is the first time a creative agency and cutting-edge technology such as IBM Watson are being combined to provide creative solutions to clients’ challenges in this space.

The event brings together inventors, developers, UX, designers, behaviour strategists, planners and account people to find new ways to ‘create’ products capable of positively impacting brands’ presence in the marketspace. These individuals come from different disciplines and countries around the Ogilvy network to collaborate with IBM and seek fresh, creative perspectives and data-driven solutions to citizens’ health concerns.

The hack teams will use the innovative IBM Watson tool to address briefs put to the teams from Boots, Nestlé and Beacon Medical Group, covering a broad range of specific challenges at the forefront of each brands’ business.

Leading pharmacy led health and beauty retail, Boots UK was invited to put a brief forward for the Hack. Dave Robinson, Head of Loyalty, Personalisation and Partnership Marketing at Boots UK comments;

“We know that the rise in digital health care solutions means people are more interested in self-care than ever before and people are turning to digital channels in a bid to feel more in control of their health. We were delighted to be given the opportunity to put this insight forward as a brief for the Ogilvy hackathon and as a member of the judges panel, I am personally very excited to see and hear first-hand what cutting edge innovation comes out of the two days and exploring further how we can bring this to life…”

The hackathon will comprise of eight teams, each with six participants. These consist of a Watson developer, Ogilvy developer, a UX/UI designer, change architect and two additional participants chosen from the Ogilvy network. During the first two days, all teams will go through an ideation and build phase that will see them work around the clock to bring to life their ideas.

On the final day, the teams will present their final ideas to the clients and a judging panel. The presentations will be judged based on several criteria, including delivery, cost-efficiency, creativity, technical skill and design thinking. 



What’s new at Boots? Find out the latest updates from the UK’s largest pharmacy-led health and beauty chain – from new products and services to important business developments.



Read the views of our team members at Boots, who are experts in their field. Find out what they think about the most important issues of the day – from healthcare equality to sustainability.


Media Resources

A you are a journalist looking for information and resources about Boot? Visit our media resources hub to access images, reports, spokespeople and videos.


Boots is the UK’s leading health and beauty retailer with over 52,000 team members and around 1,900 stores, ranging from local community pharmacies to large destination health and beauty stores.*

Boots serves its customers and patients for life as the leading provider of healthcare on the high street and the UK’s number one beauty destination. It offers an unrivalled depth and breadth of products, which incorporates its extensive own brand range and innovative portfolio of brands, including No7, the UK’s No1 skincare brand, Soap & Glory, Liz Earle Beauty and Sleek MakeUP.

2024 marks Boots’ 175th anniversary year. Founder John Boot opened a herbalist store in Nottingham in 1849 to offer an affordable alternative to traditional medicines. His son Jesse expanded the business to become a modern retailer and the biggest chemist in Britain. Throughout its history, Boots has listened, learned and innovated, and it continues to challenge itself to improve its products and services every day.

Boots is part of Walgreens Boots Alliance, which is a global leader in pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing retail.  More company information is available on

*Figures accurate as of 31 May 2024