Berlin to become a digital hub for “IoT and FinTech”

Category: Internet of Things

© BMWi/Maurice Weiss

© BMWi/Maurice Weiss

Berlin set to become a digital hub for the Internet of Things (IoT) and FinTech. Minister for Economic Affairs Sigmar Gabriel has already presented the digital hub initiative at this year’s IT summit in Saarbrücken.

The hub concept is to be implemented in existing locations where there is an ongoing cooperation between startups, scientists, investors and medium-sized companies. By working together closely, companies and founders will be more likely to come up with innovations and draw on the full potential that startups have to offer. The Berlin-based hub “IoT and FinTech” is to be structured in a decentralised way which will enable several hub locations to merge their competencies. At the IT summit, Berlin-based Startup-Campus Factory and Company Builder Finleap have already shown interest in supporting the digital hub in Berlin.

In order to select the locations, the Senate Department for Economics, Technology and Research in cooperation with Berlin Partner is planning to receive expressions of interest as part of a so-called “Beauty Contest”.

Cornelia Yzer, Senator for Economics, Technology and Research: “Already today, Berlin has an excellent reputation as a tech hub, thanks to its vibrant startup scene, its many innovation labs, digital centres, incubators and maker labs. With the BMWi’s initiative, Berlin will be able to provide yet another location to support innovation and draw on the potential of Berlin-based startups. Our thematic focus will cover the application industries health, energy, transport/mobility and communications infrastructure which are important to Berlin in its role as Smart City. As Germany's FinTech capital we will focus on this important area as well.”

In addition to Berlin, the BMWi has announced a “Mobility” hub to be developed in Munich, a “Logistics” hub in Dortmund and Hamburg as well as a “FinTech” hub in Frankfurt. This initial plan will be extended to up to 12 cities/regions in Germany.

The national and international interconnection of hubs through a centralised hub agency and making the hubs known under the umbrella brand “de.Hub” are two key elements of the hub concept.

In addition, the hubs are to be strategically promoted abroad by Germany Trade and Invest (GTAI) “It is our aim to make Germany an attractive location for founders, fledgling companies, investors and specialists from abroad,” Sigmar Gabriel said in an <link,did=789762.html>official statement</link>.

Referring to the BMWi's hub initiative, Bernhard Rohleder, managing director at Bitkom, announced the following in <link>a guest contribution</link> published in tech magazine “Berlin Valley”: “By building the hubs, we not only create a second Silicon Valley like in the US, where the focus is on IT, but a multitude of Silicon Valleys that surround our leading industries.”