Axel Springer Plug and Play gets underway with eight start-ups

Axel Springer Plug and Play gets underway with eight start-ups

The start-up companies that will participate in the first accelerator program of Axel Springer Plug and Play have been selected: Asuum, eflear, mpax, nextsocial, papayer, Solid Sound Labs, TickTickTickets, and ZenGuard. They have already moved into Markgrafenstraße 12-14 in Berlin, where they will spend the next three months working intensively on the further development of their business models. As they strive to realize their ideas, they will be supported by more than 60 mentors with business start-up experience, including, for example, Jon Handschin (“Moviepilot”), Philipp Möhring (“Seedcamp”), Philippa Pauen (“Wummelkiste”), Christian Rebernik (“Zanox”), Ramzi Rizk (“EyeEm”), and Renaud Visage (“Eventbrite”). They will also be supported by specialized experts from the media brands and portfolio companies of Axel Springer, as well as the Plug and Play network in the United States.

“All the companies participating in Axel Springer Plug and Play have completed the start-up phase and have already developed prototypes or market-tested business models. Now these companies need to take the next crucial steps, to win over more customers and investors. Together with our network, we will support them by playing the role of sparring partners,” said Ulrich Schmitz, Chief Technology Officer at Axel Springer and founding managing director of Axel Springer Plug and Play.

The Axel Springer Plug and Play participants will also be able to attend events hosted by the cooperation partner “Betahaus Berlin.” Furthermore, they will be allowed to use the work space there free of charge for another month after the program is over.

Axel Springer AG and the Plug and Play Tech Center, a leading start-up investor and accelerator from Silicon Valley, joined forces to create Axel Springer Plug and Play. Besides knowledge transfer and office space, Axel Springer Plug and Play also provides start-up funding of EUR 25,000 to each start-up company. The program will close onSeptember 5, 2013, with a “Demo Day,” where all the teams will pitch their business models to a select audience of international investors, in order to raise follow-up financing. As part of the support provided to these young companies, Axel Springer Plug and Play has received a five percent stake in each company. The second round of the program will commence in October 2013. For additional information, please visit www.axelspringerplugandplay.com.

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