Startup Autobahn sees firms from seven countries make a pitch

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 17 Jul 2016

Startup Autobahn, a joint project run by Daimler AG, Plug and Play, the University of Stuttgart and ARENA2036, has made its first selections.

Startups from all over the world are invited to apply for the accelerator programme focusing on the topic of the future of mobility. The application phase has already gotten underway for the second edition of the programme, which starts in March 2017. The entrepreneurs on the Startup Autobahn scheme furthermore have the possibility of carrying on the three-month programme in Silicon Valley, California. 

On July 15, out of the 300 interested startups, 22 pitched for the spots in the accelerator programme of Startup Autobahn.  The following startups are in the running: Otonomo, Noveto, blickshift, Gauzy, n-join, TruckPad, CarJump, Evopark, Vayyar, Hopon, Argus, 4tiitoo und Canatu    

For this they presented their ideas for shaping the future of mobility. Their pioneering ideas likewise covered a broad spectrum of topics, from the use of artificial intelligence to the vital data measurement, flexible touch screens, mobile transport management systems, intelligent smart glass or personalized sound systems.

"We are delighted at the enormous interest of the startups have shown in Startup Autobahn. Unfortunately, just having a good idea isn't enough to guarantee success, so we seek to offer the entrepreneurs the setting they need to focus entirely on their goal: power ahead with their business idea. They should have the courage and freedom to completely rethink the future of mobility - very much in line with the spirit of our startup pioneers, Carl Benz and Gottlieb Daimler," commented Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG & Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars. 

Wolfram Ressel, Vice-Chancellor of Stuttgart University, was also excited about the dynamic character and professionalism of the startups’ presentations: "On the first Startup Autobahn Selection Day, we experienced a thrilling firework of creative startup ideas. I am delighted that this captivating spirit of entrepreneurship will, through our ‘Industry on Campus’ project, in the future also feed into the research and teachings at the University of Stuttgart. It will instil exceptionally qualified young scientists from our university with a passion for shaping their own entrepreneurial future." 

After Selection Day comes Expo Day 

Starting in September, the selected startups will embark on the accelerator programme, a special three-month coaching scheme during which they will be prepared for the Expo Day in fully equipped workspaces and with the support of mentors.

"The pitches and the entrepreneurial spirit here are ona a par with anything you'll find in Silicon Valley. The programme thrives on its network, its partnerships and the startups themselves, of course – all this comes together to perfection here in Stuttgart. We can hardly wait to work together with these enthusiastic business founders over the next few months, and are obviously also greatly looking forward to the new applications for the next edition of the programme," enthuses Saeed Amidi, CEO of Plug & Play Tech Center. The Expo Day, planned for January, gives the startups the opportunity to pitch their refined ideas to investors. 



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