What motivated you to participate as a speaker at the accelerator upCAT?
It fits well to my task at SAP. There, it is my job to accompany innovations from the first idea up until market adoption. Furthermore, I have also already founded a startup.
What is your field of expertise? What will prospective founders learn from you during the Focus Week?
My field of expertise is business development for new products in the B2B area. I am less acquainted with consumer goods business. I can teach founders how to commercialize innovations and about the path to market adoption.
What expectations do you have for the participants and for upCAT?
Curiosity. I am happy if the participants bring concrete questions about commercialization and the market entry of their product.
Were you already active in the field of business startups before?
Yes, I was responsible for commercialization in the “Global Business Incubator” at SAP. Before that, I had my own startup from 2002 to 2006.
Where do you see challenges on the way to becoming a successful business?
It often takes a pretty long time to get to the first paying customers. In order to pass this hard time, you need a concept.
What advice can you give to the young startup teams?
- Founders should take the B2B area into account. In my experience, chances for success are higher there. Consumer goods business is often a winner-takes- all deal and there can only be very few winners.
- Gather experience in the branch first and build up a network. You can do this, for instance, by working in a different business for two or three years after your studies.