“Copycat”

Posted on November 30, 2011 by

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I was actually going to write about the occurring entrepreneurial differences of London and Berlin including the lack of venture capital (VC) in Berlin. Because of current events I want to start with the prejudice of Berlin based “copycats” first, stated by authors like as Sarah Lacy.

Again, the enemy of American start-ups has stroke, Rocket Internet. According to Deutsche-Start-Ups Rocket Internet has copied another rising American start-up star, Pinterest with their Berlin based contrary Pinspire. Pinterest has just started exceeding more revenues out of individually handmade products than the New York based Internet platform “veteran” Etsy proving that this prejudice is not made up out of thin air. With wimdu.de the incubator was already having its hands on a smaller brother of airbnb.de earlier this year, another American start-up which is describable as couch surfing for grown-ups. And there are other Berliner incubators being suspected of copying Americans or even stealing German start-up ideas.

Unfortunately “capital has the power”.

This might prove that there is no lack of VC in Berlin but still the prejudice of “copycats” partly is and in many cases VC is used in a way only the investor is benefiting. Considering the post of emilybrgmnn that’s not a healthy relationship between investor and start-up but luckily there are different examples in Berlin.

As one of my partner bloggers nclshll has mentioned previously as well as Travis J. Todd from Silionallee.com Niklas Zennstroem, co-founder of Skype has invested 4.2 Mio via his investment firm Atomico into 6Wunderkinder a Berlin based software provider (in easy terms).

This is one of the first examples of an international firm investing into Berlin without any other intention than profiting from the collaboration. Previously and still there have been mostly regional investors like immobilienscout24 investing into start-ups (in this example co-working spaces).

As you can see, it’s a lot like Laurie Segall from CNN Money has said: “The Berlin start-up scene is a wild child.”, which I have justified in a previous post already.

Of course a child has to grow up but once it has learned of its role models it has the ability to even overcome the burdens of ancient times.

Posted in: hype, Venture Capital