“A place to help young entrepreneurs and students find cheap workspaces and the right infrastructure for their company foundation” – this is how Andreas Fischer has described Germany’s first student incubator, named “Launchpad”. Andreas Fischer is a member of the PionierGarage student group at KIT. He was involved in the planning of Launchpad. A “launch pad” is the starting place of a rocket. PionierGarage similarly aims to provide the necessary starting energy for projects in their early stages of foundation.
More than a year passed between the first idea and its realisation, from the search for sponsors up to various renovation and renovation works. “The search for suitable facilities required nerves of steel,” Fischer recounts. “We are all the more delighted about the location of our Launchpad, so close to KIT, Technologiefabrik and the Hoepfnerburg.” Three traditional office spaces, a common room for mutual exchange, and a co-working area are located on an area of 230 square metres. This space is available to all entrepreneur teams looking for a short-term workspace; in the evening, it can be used for events such as workshops or hackathons.
The effort has paid off. On 12 July, the Launchpad on Rintheimer Straße was inaugurated during an opening party. It started at 5 PM with the “Demoday” event. Entrepreneurs presented their business ideas within the scope of an exhibition and a pitch. Attendees included Selfbits, Kinemic, Der Dönermann, myProducts, Magmaform, Keypoint Visual Management, Tippster, Trvlmind and LehrWerk. Afterwards, Andreas Fischer officially inaugurated the Launchpad, reflecting on the past months of preparations and thanking the countless helpers, sponsors and visitors.
Over the course of the following weeks, we will find out which teams are going to move into the incubator. We wish them a great start with the Launchpad!