Daimler is establishing Startup Autobahn, a new startup ecosystem in Stuttgart, in partnership with Silicon Valley accelerator Plug and Play, the University of Stuttgart and ARENA2036. The The focus is on ideas and projects associated with the future of mobility; hard- and software-oriented startups can apply at www.startup-autobahn.com/en/.
Following the application phase, around 25 startups will be invited to the Selection Day on 14 July 2016. The winners will be accepted onto the accelerator scheme, in which they will be prepared for the Expo-Day for three to six months within the framework of special coaching and with support from mentors. As part of the Startup Autobahn’s Accelerator scheme, the Coworking Space and Hardware Lab will be at the startups’ disposal in the ARENA2036 research factory. At the Expo-Day the pioneers will pitch to potential investors.
In contrast to Silicon Valley with its software focus, with Startup Autobahn both software and, above all, hardware-oriented projects are to be in the foreground. We are warmly welcoming international as well as local startups. Whether it’s the USA, China, India or Germany—for a long time now we have been focusing the strengths of various world regions with our global research and development network. But our roots are and remain here in the strong industrial region of Baden-Württemberg. Therefore this region must retain and continue to strengthen its huge appeal for innovation and inventive spirit in future, too.— Thomas Weber, Member of the Board of Management at Daimler AG and responsible for Group Research & Mercedes-Benz Cars Development
The Hardware Lab in ARENA2036 is a large high-tech workshop (approx. 1500 m2), containing equipment such as tools, machines, 3D printers and software for building prototypes and small series production. In addition to this, the aim is to accelerate the development process with supporting services such as legal and tax advice, professional help with financial planning and project management. Straightforward networking with partners from business, research and politics, plus contact with investors, potential customers and mentors will also be among the services offered to the startups.