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Val Vacante

VP, Solutions Innovationdentsu

Austin, TX

Member Since July 2021


Product Strategy


Val Vacante is an award-winning, creative catalyst and global innovator. As the VP of Solutions Innovation at Dentsu, she uncovers cultural trends, commerce dynamics, and emerging technologies to shape next-generation product innovations, and solutions impacting the way people connect and experience the physical and digital world. Val is the product lead and innovator behind the Meta Global Messaging Alliance and Intelligent Messaging, Dentsu's first-of-its-kind full suite of end-to-end messaging innovations designed to accelerate 1:1 conversational messaging, AI-amplified assistance, and human connection – showcased at CES, SXSW, Cosmoprofs and featured in Digiday, MediaPost, Retail Brew and more. She is the co-creator behind Dentsu NXT Space, a co-space for rapidly realizing the future of AI, 3D spatial environments, and everyday tech tools in collaboration with Microsoft, LinkedIn and featured in PSFK’s, “Best of CES,” Forbes, Fast Company, Digiday, Coindesk, Metaverse Post and more. Val is also the co-creator of ShopNXT™ — Dentsu’s retail innovations focused on helping brands create more personalized shopping experiences increasing loyalty, sales, and customer joy. The ShopNXT suite of products has been named top product picks at CES by PCR Magazine featured in CNET, The Drum, PSFK, eMarketer, MediaPost, PCR among others. Additionally, Val architected and launched NXT Intelligence™ an innovation platform featuring 12 technology, innovation, and brand solutions designed to rapidly explore, evaluate and evolve business growth opportunities. Her latest work focuses on connected experiences, emerging technologies, gaming, retail and play. She is also the Founder of the strategy and innovation firm Collabsco; where she pioneered award-winning digital products and connected experiences across IoT, AR, VR, voice, robotics, and the first  connected play landscape featured in VentureBeat, The Drum, VRScout, and more. Her portfolio includes over 50+ brands including Microsoft, Hasbro, Mattel, Disney, Bandai Namco Entertainment, PepsiCo, P&G, Nestlé, Mercedes-Benz, MINI, AT&T, Vodafone, Honeywell, Sleep Number, Dell, MERGE, WowWee and Virsix Games, among others. Val has been named one of the Top 25 Women in Tech by PCR magazine, Women in Tech Global Product Management Leader of the Year, The Most Powerful Women in Technology, by CIO Views and 40 Over Forty. She serves on the Fast Company Executive Board, SXSW Innovation Advisory Board, is a Global Expert to MassChallenge, an international speaker and writer.

Published content

10 key brand strategies to build an affiliate or ambassador program

expert panel

Here's how to identify, recruit, and nurture the right people to share your company's impact. As it becomes even more competitive for brands to showcase their unique ability to provide consumer value over similar products and services, storytelling continues to grow as a key component in how companies deliver their narratives to current and prospective clients.  What better way to leverage an organization's background, mission, goals, and achievements than through a dedicated affiliate program featuring brand ambassadors who are just as passionate about all the things the brand represents and how it has made a difference in their lives? If you're ready to launch an affiliate or brand ambassador program to elevate your business offerings in the marketplace here are 10 ideas to consider, courtesy of Fast Company Executive Board members.

16 strategies to launch a creative work lab that fosters innovation

expert panel

Apply these best practices to pique your employees' curiosity and increase their participation. When employees begin to demonstrate stagnant behaviors or disinterest at work, it may be a sign that it's time to offer them a new challenge to keep them engaged in their current roles and potential growth at the company they represent. One way company leaders can boost their team's low morale is to build a creative lab within the confines of the organization to create "intrapreneurship" opportunities, as well as a timely reminder of the business mission and goals and why they're here. Below, 16 experts from Fast Company Executive Board offer their best strategies for designing safe spaces that give staff members a voice to collaborate on innovative ideas and solve problems that will help the company grow.

19 ways to enhance your personal and professional brand

expert panel

When it comes to brand marketing, elevating your authentic story as an individual is just as important as company branding. For the past decade or longer, the term "brand marketing" has taken on a life of its own. People now realize that it's not just about a material product or service; "brand marketing" is also tied directly to the individual who is trying to launch or further themselves in the marketplace overall, and not just with any particular company affiliation. In an unstable economy with massive layoffs, it's all about the person and the next steps they want to take in life—especially as it relates to their personal passion, mission, and goals. Here, 19 Fast Company Executive Board members each share their advice with individuals who aspire to elevate their personal and professional branding to become a powerful thought leader who creates and delivers highly impactful, memorable presentations through the stories they share with others—during the workday or after hours.

16 ways to prepare for the next holiday campaign

expert panel

If you are just starting to think about your marking strategy, you're already behind—but it's not too late. The holiday season can be extremely competitive when it comes to attracting the attention of hesitant consumers. This is an ever-increasing dilemma in today's uncertain economy. In order to stand out, the company leaders must analyze the market trends carefully in order to provide the right solutions to potential and current customers. They also need to be flexible enough to change direction if a campaign isn't landing well.  Here, 16 experts from Fast Company Executive Board each share their tips to finalize and implement marketing and sales strategies for the upcoming holiday season that will help companies stay ahead in the marketplace.

12 ways to get your company noticed at the next annual conference

expert panel

Applying the "show, don't tell" method in today's digital world can work wonders if you want to build your sales pipeline. When your sales and marketing team members are gearing up to promote your organization at a yearly in-person or hybrid-remote industry convention—in the new normal, it's always important to figure out the best strategy to effectively rise above the competitive noise and capture the attention of your target audience. So, how can company leaders elevate learning opportunities for current and potential customers to gather and retain information about their business products and services in the most efficient way? Below, 12 Fast Company Executive Board members share tips to keep consumers engaged and interested in what your brand has to offer, showing them why they should stick around to hear more and possibly give it a chance rather than moving on to another vendor.

Is now the time to expand your current products and services?

expert panel

Business leaders share their thoughts on how to build your business the right way. Oftentimes, when business begins to pick up the pace and executives are able to maintain positive outcomes on their bottom line objectives, quarter over quarter, there's a sudden temptation to push the brand of products further to improve or expand upon its current offerings.   But depending on the economic climate in the overall industry, sometimes it's worth treading lightly and putting on the brakes to take your time and conduct further research before getting too far in over your head. Here, eight Fast Company Executive Board members offer one tip for brand leaders to carefully evaluate their existing products or services and identify opportunities for improvement or expansion.

Company details


Company bio

Dentsu’s integrated network of agencies is purpose-built to help clients navigate, progress and thrive in a world of change. To champion meaningful progress with and for our clients, we are organized in a way that puts our clients and their customers at the center of everything that we do. Our connected tools, products and capabilities are focused on delivering human-centric, integrated solutions -- seamlessly bringing together all of the creativity, media and CXM expertise of our network in service of both growth & good. Dentsu international operates in over 145 markets worldwide with more than 45,000 dedicated specialists.


Marketing & advertising

Area of focus

Experience Strategy
Product Innovation
Emerging Technologies

Company size

10,001 plus