Right before Easter, we had the pleasure to welcome a delegation of 18 people coming from 6 different countries for 3 days to explore Berlin’s startup hub – a view from our German hosts.
Among our guests, we had government representatives, investors, journalists, ecosystem builders, mentors and entrepreneurs – all of them full of fire and passionate about entrepreneurship!
Day 1 of the Berlin Soft-Landing started at Berlin Partner offices, with a talk by Carl-Philipp Wackernagelpresenting a brief story of startups and tech in Berlin. He also briefed the delegation about their Start Alliance program, ran very successfully for several years from Berlin to the world.
The day continued later at GTEC’s brand new offices at WeWork Potsdamer Platz, where Mor Eini, our Innovation Program Manager, introduced the Soft-Landing.eu 2-year program, supported by the European Union Horizon 2020 project. Afterwards, our Founding Managing Director Benjamin Rohé gave a presentation about why Berlin is not the next Silicon Valley, but a better alternative on how to leverage technology to improve society.
To top up the first day, GTEC and Dentons, world’s largest law firm by headcount and number of offices, hosted the Global Ecosystem Leaders Dinner to bring together the Soft-Landing Mission Delegation with the movers and shakers from Berlin. A very special thanks to Rebekka Hye-Knudsen, Partner at Dentons, for making this fantastic collaboration possible!
Alexander Piutti, GTEC’s Managing Director, was the featured speaker for the Breakfast Talk on Day 2 of the Berlin Soft-Landing, which continued later with the visit from Leon Reiner from Impact Hub Berlin, Axel Nitsch from High Tech Gründerfonds and the journalist Tricia Levasseur.
After a morning packed with talks, it was time for the delegation to head to Cadus at their Crisis Response Makerspace, where the members learned about Cadus’ mobile hospital offering aid in war zones directly from Verena Lauble and Christopher Löffler.
The last day of the very first Soft-Landing started really strong with Damian Polok, Global Shaper and Vice-Curator Frankfurt for the World Economic Forum, whose talk put an end at the meetings at WeWork Potsdamer Platz.
From our offices, the Soft-Landing delegation went to the EUREF Campus, where they met Aimee Apelfrom at Climate-KIC and everyone could enjoy a ride with Emily, Germany’s first autonomous driving bus!
And with that last rush, the first Soft-Landing Mission ever was completed! So far we’ve received fantastic feedback from everyone who gathered in Berlin to explore our startup ecosystem:
“What I liked the most about this Sof-Landing experience were the shared experiences and challenges within different startups ecosystems. It was great to gain a better understanding of the Berlin (and German) market, how it works, what are the challenges and who are the players. And the networking part which is always really important and beneficial.”
Caroline Cannamela, WILCO
“The most valuable lesson for me during this Soft-Landing was to learn about different models of Accelerator and variety of Frameworks for promoting innovations, implemented successfully in France, Berlin and in the Netherlands.”
Iris Arbel-Ganz, HAC – Herzliya Accelerator Center
We hope to keep it up in future missions planned within the Soft-Landing program: next ones with applications open are Paris (happening between May 21-25) and Vilnius expeditions (taking place between June 11-15) – you can apply today!