“Make it in Ulm – Do it in Ulm” is the slogan with which the city, together with Neu-Ulm and the districts Neu-Ulm and Alb-Donau, want to become more attractive for founders. “There are people with good ideas, but they go to Berlin instead of pursuing their projects because the conditions there are better”, says Ulrike Sautter, who is responsible for economic development at the city of Ulm.
Competing against big cities
To score against big start-up scenes like Berlin or Switzerland is difficult, Sautter is aware of that. “There is much more capital for founders there. But we want to make things more sexy in the region. “That’s why both cities, the chambers, colleges and universities, regional banks, and others have come together with some startups to consider what the region needs to be attractive to founders , In addition to missing venture capital, this also includes “a cheekier way that appeals to young people”, explains Sautter.
With a pavilion in the city center, where founders can present their projects, more attention is to be created for the startup scene. A request to Ikea, to put up a pavilion in their parking lot, was unfortunately rejected.
Common online platform
Another component of the concept is the development of a common online platform. Founders should find vouchers there for marketing or tax consulting, but also bundled all important information and contacts. “For this, the institutions have to work out their three core competences”. says Sautter. Ultimately, the founder should profit.
Creating new ways: mentoring
On the homepage but also to startups in short videos to introduce and call besides their ideas and facts such as their capital needs. On the other hand, a mentoring is to be set up: companies that can imagine supporting startups, put a profile with their skills online. “The founders can then look at them and apply to suitable companies”, explains Sautter. It would not have to come from the same industry both. “Mentoring then runs for half or even a whole year”.
With his concept, the team around Sautter convinced the jury of the Baden-Württemberg competition Startup BW local last year. “We are now a founding friendly community.” For the facilitation promotion, there are 5000 euros from the country. However, to take big steps requires more capital and publicity.
Also published on Medium.