Skip to content
collaboration-startups-mid-sized
23 November 2017

Collaboration between startups and mid-sized companies. Learn. Match. Partner.

When startups and mid-sized companies meet, two worlds collide. Startups are the main driver of digitization but inexperienced, while mid-sized companies do have experience but lack digitization expertise. Collaboration between both holds great potential for the German economy. Our new study “Collaboration between startups and mid-sized companies. Learn. Match. Partner.” shows how startups and mid-sized companies can realize this potential, achieve their goals and overcome barriers. Prof. Dr. Martin Wrobel presented the results and recommendations for action on 15 November 2017 to about 60 participants at an event at Digital Spielfeld Hub.

The following panel discussion, moderated by Prof. Dr. Dr. Thomas Schildhauer (HIIG), with the experts Nora Heer (Loopline Systems), Frank Kirchner (S-Kreditpartner), Michael Hoffmann (Visa Inc. and Spielfeld Digital Hub) and Philipp Leutiger (Roland Berger) focussed on the question how collaboration between startups and mid-sized companies can become a success. Afterwards, all participants discussed the collaboration phases learn, match, and partner, as well as similarities and differences between Germany and the United States in four different workshops.

Read the complete publication (in German)

During the group discussions, the participants considered the importance of defining the right criteria to measure the success of partnerships right from the beginning. Another topic that came up was communication on an equal footing, which was regarded as a crucial foundation for long-term cooperation. The workshop on similarities and differences between the US and Germany came to the conclusion that universities play a big role in laying the groundwork for entrepreneurship. A more interdisciplinary approach and the chance for students to try new things could be a chance for German higher education to increase entrepreneurial activities.

The event’s participants included founders of startups such as Ambi-Vation, Loopline Systems, DaWanda, mStats & impact·distillery, Granny Aupair, vjsual, Octorank, Revolut, managers and directors of mid-sized companies and corporates like S-Kreditpartner, Francotyp-Postalia, Axel Springer Digital, BSH Hausgeräte, Quadriga Media Berlin, Targobank, Unicredit, IEE S.A., as well as representatives of other organizations such as German Association for Small and Medium-sized Businesses, Senate Department for Economy, Energy and Businesses of Berlin, The Berlin School of Economics and Law, and Free University of Berlin.

The website presenting the study’s results includes an executive summary and slides in English.
This post represents the view of the authors and does not necessarily represent the view of the institute itself. For more information about the topics of these articles and associated research projects, please contact info@hiig.de.

This post represents the view of the author and does not necessarily represent the view of the institute itself. For more information about the topics of these articles and associated research projects, please contact info@hiig.de.

Martin Wrobel, Prof. Dr.

Associated Researcher: Innovation, Entrepreneurship & Society

Lisa Schmechel

Former Student Assistant: Internet-enabled Innovation

Explore Research issue in focus

Man sieht einen leeren Büroraum ohne Möbel und braunen Teppichboden. Das Bild steht sinnbildlich für die Frage, wie die Arbeit der Zukunft und digitales Organisieren und Zukunft unseren Arbeitsplatz beeinflusst. You see an empty office room without furniture and brown carpeting. The image is emblematic of the question of how the work of the future and digital organising and the future will influence our workplace.

Digital future of the workplace

How will AI and digitalisation change the future of the workplace? We assess their impact, and the opportunities and risks for the future of work.

Sign up for HIIG's Monthly Digest

and receive our latest blog articles.

Further articles

What skills does one need for the race with the machines on the labour market

Skills to ‘race with the machines’: The value of complementarity

As workers are constantly urged to reskill, how can they determine which skills to invest in? Learnings from one of the world’s largest online freelancing platforms.

a curved white line on green football grass, coming from the bottom right corner and ending in the top right corner, symbolising how platform councils could help regulating online communication

More Power to the People: How Platform Councils Can Make Online Communication More Democratic

Companies dominate digital spaces, impacting public debate. Could Platform Councils make online communication more democratic?

Russian online platforms compete with Amazon, Facebook & co.

How Russian online platforms compete with global giants

The Russian versions of Amazon, Facebook and co. are just as successful as their US competitiveness. How did they emerge and develop?