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This Week in Germany: Funding, IPOs, Startup & Accelerator News. And One More Thing. Written by Felicitas Hackmann on 9. January 2015

Here is what happened in Germany’s startup scene this week:


Funding Rounds/Exits/IPOs/That kind of News

Goldman Sachs invests in Mister Spex

Germany’s leading online spectacles hands out roughly 20 percent stake to Goldman Sachs. The investment will be used to expand in Germany and abroad. “An IPO is an option, although not in the near future,” Mister Spex Chief Executive Dirk Graber told German daily Welt, according to an advance release of its Thursday edition.

Westwing raises €25 million

Besides Rocket Internet other previous investors joined for this round, which makes it a total funding €179 million.

GameGenetics Receives Financial Support from the new EuropeanPioneers Program

Berlin-based GameGenetics is a company specializing in user acquisition for free-to-play mobile and online games. This week, it announces that it has received €250,000 in support from the new EuropeanPioneers Program, an initiative that is funded by the European Union.

Startups announces Kreditech as the FinTech startup of 2014

A 14 person jury named Hamburg-based Kreditech the FinTech startup of 2014. The jury explains its choice by saying that Kreditech is obviously disruptive and, unfortunately, one of the few German FinTech startups that has substantial foreign investment. Kreditech applies big data to score the creditworthiness of customers.
[] (German)

Berlin-based entrepreneur makes Forbes’ “30 under 30″

In a list that includes the founder of Instagram, Jonas Piela, cofounder of the Berlin-based startup Avuba, has been named as one of Forbes’ “30 under 30″ in the category of Consumer Tech. “I’m excited, and it is further confirmation that the work our team is doing is meaningful and desirable,” says Piela on his achievement.
[Gründerszene] (German), [Forbes]

AUPEO! wins innovation prize at CES

The Berlin-based audio streaming startup AUPEO! won the innovation prize in In-Vehicle Accessories-Control-Navigation at the Consumer Electronic Show (CES) in Las Vegas. CEO Holger Weiss mentioned to the Berliner Morgenpost in December 2014 that the company wants to become “a kind of Twitter for cars”.

FlixBus and MeinFernbus merge to combine routes, General Atlanic invests

Buyout group General Atlantic is investing in German bus companies FlixBus and MeinFernbus, which are merging to combine their routes. MeinFernbus’ fleet is 560 busses strong, more than twice as many as FlixBus (240 busses). The two companies will work as one from now on. To Gründerszene, it was stated that it is not planned to lay off staff.
[Gründerszene](German), [EconomicTimes]

Jobspotting Launches Job Matching Platform

Berlin-based Jobspotting launched in Germany and the UK this week. It promises to present users only relevant job offers through criteria such as skills, experience, and location. Additionally, the algorithm learns from the interaction and feedback of the users.

Incubators, Accelerators,…

Founder Institute starts its program in Frankfurt

Founder Institute, which names itself the world’s largest entrepreneur training and startup launch program, opens an office in Frankurt (Main). The 4-month long program will provide help in areas such as Startup Legal & Incorporation, Hiring, Firing & Co-founders, Outsourcing, Partners & Suppliers, Marketing & Sales, and Fundraising.
[Founder Institute]

Rocket Internet and PLDT launch joint venture for mobile payment solutions

Rocket Internet and the telephone company The Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT) have launched a joint venture in the mobile payment service market. Its goal is to gain market share in emerging markets.
[Tech In Asia]

TechStars will launch in Berlin in June

TechStars Berlin will join a global network of over 5,000 alumni, mentors and investors. The accelerator wants to invest in 10, mainly European startups every year. Applications are open.


What does it take to become a CTO?

The CTO is the one that makes everyone involved believe in the mission and motivates the team to strive and meet the challenges set.

WHERE THE HECK IS…? Did we miss something? Let us know in the comments below!

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Image: Felicitas Hackmann