The good, the bad, the news: This week in Germany



Busy week with lots of news: investments, launches, IPOs… Here is this week’s summary.

Dropbox and Hootsuite open offices in Hamburg

Airbnb started in Hamburg, Twitter, Facebook, Google still have offices in the city in North of Germany. According to rumors, Dropbox and Hootsuite will open offices there as well. So far, Dropbox neither declined or confirm, Hootsuite however did confirm.
[Gründerszene] (German)

Studydrive raises €2 million round

The Cologne-based study material exchange startup Studydrive raised a €2 million round. The investment is split in capital and media budget and comes from DvH Ventures and Enployour as well as two business angels. The investment will be used to expand in Europe and to develop an tutor program.
[Gründerszene] (German)

Threema launches in the US

Threema, Germany’s most popular paid app, is a secure messenger. Especially after Whatsapp was acquired by Facebook, the downloads increased, CEO Martin Blatter explains. Now, the app wants to expand and hits the US market.
[Business Insider]

Online Jewelry seller Elumeo plans IPO

The Berlin-based jewelry e-ecommerce elumeo Group plans an IPO with Société Générale Corporate & Investment Banking and Baader Bank AG managing it as joint global coordinators and bookrunners. The company targets the value of the IPO between €40 million and €60 million. Elumeo was founded in 2008 and reported that its average compound annual growth rate from sales has been about 30 percent since 2009.

Rewe Digital invests in payment provider

Berlin-based lets users order online and pay in cash at certain (offline) retailers. REWE Digital GmbH now invested a seven-digit Euro amount. The investment will be used to expand the product portfolio and include other industries. As of right now, the service is used by over 550 companies, e.g. in the online gaming or traveling sector. New industries will cover branches like insurances.
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Outdoor advertising company Ströer acquires 90% of Regiohelden

The German outdoor advertising company Störer acquired 90 percent of the marketing startup Regiohelden which focusses on SEO marketing for regional companies. The other 10 percent stay with the founders. Former investors include Schwarzwälder Bote, Mittelständische Beteiligungsgesellschaft Baden-Württemberg, Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments, Mountain Partners, and KfW Bankengruppe . Together they invested at least €8 million. Details of the deal remain undisclosed.
[Gründerszene] (German)

Bergfürst returns banking license

Crowdinvesting, real estate, neo-investing: Berlin-based investment platform Bergfürst has tried many things. The last news were that it got a banking license. That, however, is now being returned. Reason for it is way more administrative work, CEO Guido Sandler explained.
[Gründerszene] (German)

German Startups Group plans IPO

The German Startups Group Berlin GmbH plans its IPO. The VC is known for its investment in the food delivery service Delivery Hero, the music streaming service SoundCloud, and the online glasses shop Mister Spex. Details remain undisclosed for as of right now. However,  Commerzbank AG is arranging the IPO with Hauck & Aufhaeuser Privatbankiers KGaA, BHF-BANK AG and Quirin Bank AG.


FinTech company builder expands into insurance market

Half a year ago, Berlin-based Finleap, a company builder for FinTech startups, was started by Hitfox founder Jan Becker. In addition to FinTech, Finleap will now also cover the insurance market, starting with Clark, an online insurance broker that calls itself “the most modern internet-technology for product- and cost transparency”.
[Gründerszene] (German)

Freeletics opens office in Berlin

Munich-based sports startup Freeletics plans to expand: Looking into current job offerings, it shows that the bootstrapped startup is looking for staff for innovative product development in Berlin. Reason for the expansion could be the larger number of developers in Germany’s capital Berlin. Open positions were also found in Paris, London and the United States. The sport startup offers a personal coach online and a large community that supports each other.
[Gründerszene] (German)

WunderCar raises Series A Round

Hamburg-based peer-to-peer car ride sharing startup WunderCar announces a Series A round. The round was led by San Francisco-based Blumberg Capital, and German and Hungarian funds. Co­-investors include an undisclosed German investor, iEurope, a leading VC fund in Eastern Europe, and Konstantin Sixt, board member of Sixt SE. The investment will be used for expansion. Details of the deal remain undisclosed.

WunderCar offers a service similar to UberPOP, which was forbidden by German authorities earlier this year. Different to a fixed rate, however, WunderCar lets each customer decide how much to pay for a ride – similar to a tip.

According to the startup, it grows at 40% per month in cities like Budapest, Warsaw and Prague with plans to launch in Istanbul at the end of the month.

TechStars starts first badge in Berlin

TechStars Berlin will start its first badge on June 15th and finish on September 10th. Six of the ten companies have a B2B focus and four startups are marketplaces that let consumer book services. Find their details on the blog:

Helpling adds a new target group: care recipients

Berlin-based Rocket Internet-backed cleaner booking platform Helpling adds a new service: It offers information about financial support of health insurances for house keeping of care recipients. Helpling also takes care of the handling itself with the insurances.
[Gründerszene] (German)

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