Hotbed of innovation.
How incubators and accelerators get businesses moving.
Aiming high with a plan.
New start-ups sprout daily from the ground – especially in Silicon Valley. They supply new materials, technologies and services, as well as ground-breaking business models, and open up as-yet unknown markets. Most of them have one set of circumstances in common: hardly any capital, no customers, a lack of experience in managing business – and almost total obscurity. So before getting liftoff like Dropbox and Instagram did, start-ups need help. They congregate at hackathons, conferences and funding competitions, promoting their business ideas which often sound suicidal – rather like a bird leaping from the nest for the first time.
What is an accelerator?
The accelerator strategy has proven successful. The joint venture between Axel-Springer-Verlag and Silicon Valley-based Plug & Play Accelerator has already assisted more than 1,200 start-ups. Its list of digital acquisitions is long and ranges from the Runtastic sport app to start-up magazine Gruenderszene.de. Axel Springer has spent a total of €3.4 billion on digital businesses since 2006. They most recently bought property platform Immowelt, as well as tech conference Hy! and vacation platform @Leisure.
What is a corporate incubator?
Knowledge – the raw material of the future.
For proof that this kind of innovation strategy can bear fruit, look no further than the success enjoyed by the previously almost written-off technology group Motorola. Since launching its own Early Stage Accelerator, more than 20 of its own start-ups have reached market maturity either as products in their own right or as components. This scheme has been so successful that it has now been extended from the USA to Motorola’s locations in India, China and Israel. Jürgen Kluge, Director for Germany at Management Consultancy McKinsey, explains what makes company building so valuable: knowledge. In a game based on knowledge, the winner takes it all.
Ideas are a scarce commodity.
Let the games begin.
As well as just breeding ideas, it is important to create spaces in which ideas can flourish from hatchlings into true high-flyers. It isn’t about working out the perfect idea. It’s about understanding the perfection of an idea and harnessing it for your business. To find out how Daimler Business Innovation gets the most out of its combination of incubators and accelerators, watch our blog.