26. October 2012–
One year older and wiser and what do we have to show for ourselves? A whole lot of fun times, an in-depth dive into the Berlin startup scene and a heap of hopefully, helpful and entertaining articles on tech and entrepreneurship from the best city in the world.
We're looking forward to being bigger and better in our second year, but before we move on, let's reflect on our 12 most popular, controversial and informative articles and videos from the past 12 months.
November 2011 saw one of Gründerszene and VentureVillage's famous nights of networking, with a host of big names from the Berlin and European startup scene in attendance. Investors mingled with entrepreneurs, designers and developers, some even teamed up to work on the next big thing. We have all the happy snaps from the ever-popular photo booth in this event wrap-up.
We love being the first to break the news on great upcoming startups in Berlin and we think we were onto a winner when we did our video on social gif app Loopcam. The startup has since gone from strength to strength, gaining funding along the way and a place in the Apple app store.
Taking inspiration from the "shit blahblah says" that went crazy all over YouTube, VentureVillage's Marguerite Imbert decided there had to be one for everyone's favourite European startup hub, Silicon Allee.
Highlights include: "It's like Pinterest, only it's.....No actually, it's exactly like Pinterest," "Amen is the best app I never, ever wanted" and "what does .de stand for?"
Who could forget our exclusive scoop on the dirty work going on at Groupon. The story, which featured leaked emails from the deals site office in Berlin, caused a stir in the startup scene and led to a lot of finger pointing and PR work on the Groupon side.
Our Russian-based contributor Yakov Sadchikov gave us an inside look into who is making a splash in the Russian Internet scene. We found out why Russia is turning into a great startup hub, run by the strength of their engineers, and looked at some of the apps and sites on the rise, including hotel booking site Oktogo.ru, online shopping mall Wikimart.ru and personal assistant for Androids - Speaktoit.
Seems like everyone in Berlin has a Twitter account nowadays, even your local Späty man. To make life easier for you, we sifted through the masses of Twitter accounts to bring you the best of the best of the Berlin scene. Whether it's entrepreneurs, startups, investors or generally amusing people, if you're not following them already, get on it!
Amen took guerrilla marketing to a whole new level when they took over iconic sites and areas of Berlin and made appropriate (and hilarious) Amen posters to describe them. The best example? "Hasenheide is the best place for buying organic, homegrown greens. Amen"
Want to know what's going on in the head of a highly successful founder? Lars Heinrich, the man behind German professional network Xing, gave VentureVillage an insight and told us all about the differences between the US and Germany, the Berlin bubble and why liquidation can be worth it.
We couldn't leave out our much loved and shared article by Adam Fletcher from The Hipstery. You went crazy for the tips he gave for spotting if you'd turned into a startup hipster - including working in a coworking office, a love of Scandanavians, turning your startup name into a verb and having 90% of your staff made up of interns. Sound familiar?
The backpacker's Web Guide to Berlin makes travelling on a budget just that bit easier. For the tech-savvy traveller, this guide can open up a city in ways you never thought were possible. Some of our favourite apps and sites include Gidsy, Carpooling and Roomsurfer.
Oliver Samwer may not be the most loved CEO in Germany but there is no denying that he is good at what he does. The Internet scene's most simultaneously feared and adulated serial founder has some definite strong points, which Gruenderszene's Joel Kaczmarek detailed in a controversially received article. Some of Samwer's talents include being a stickler for details, not accepting any less than 100% from his employees and knowing how to behave accordingly in different situations.
While it may be incredibly easy to get by in Berlin without speaking a word of German (in fact, in certain areas of Mitte it's easy to forget that English isn't in fact the official language of Berlin), it can be handy to know a little more than "ein Club Mate, bitte." We're here to help, rounding up the seven most imaginitive ways to learn the beautiful German language.