German telco giant Deutsche Telekom today launched new incubator, Hub:raum, in a bid to get close to – and help grow – Berlin’s rising tech and startup scene.
Hub:raum, located near on Andreasstrasse near Ostbahnhof, will focus on telecommunications, Internet services and digital media. Deutsche Telekom’s Min-Kim Mak and Peter Borchers (pictured) will lead the project, which will offer partner companies access to expert mentors, an extensive distribution network, infrastructure expertise and up to €300,000 in seed funding.
Deutsche Telekom CEO Rene Obermann announced the project today at the NEXT conference in Berlin. He also revealed a new partnership with General Assembly to open a educational campus in Berlin and plans to open up and standardize network APIs (good news for Berlin-based developers).
Could this be the start of a more open era for telco giants – at least this one? “We don’t believe in walled garden strategies,” Obermann said. “I’m serious about it. We have to open to two-sided markets.”
The new incubator will partner with 10 to 15 companies per year – and Deutsche Telekom executives are likely to be watching tonight’s startup pitching session at NEXT with interest. Watch this space.
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