A friend recently sent me an article, cheekily referring to my new job at the SAP IoT Startup Accelerator. The article was published in the German Manager Magazin and is entitled “Now the Startup Bubble is Bursting”. It compares the hype around founders with the excitement for boy groups in the nineties. According to the author the hype around startups is over and was just marketing ado about nothing or at least without any sustainability.
Bad news first: I have to admit that there is much truth in what the journalist describes.
But good news for me and my new job are: With the SAP IoT Startup Accelerator we are heading into the right direction – the article only underlines this.
Now let me fill you in on my thoughts: Startups stand for new ideas, new business models, and innovation. According to the article motivation and inventiveness alone are not enough to ensure sustainable success for startups. Too often, important key facts are neglected, which doom startups to disappear.
In the SAP IoT Startup Accelerator we also count on the collaboration with startups – but have the important key factor for both sides always on our mind: the customer. One of the reasons mentioned why the startup bubble appears to be bursting is, that startups rather look out for investors than customers. As SAP we know about the immense relevance of a loyal as well as growing customer base. This is why in the SAP IoT Startup Accelerator we don’t support the startups monetarily but in a more efficient way: we offer access to the SAP ecosystem with all our partners and customers, so the startups can grow in a healthy way alongside SAP and build sustainable relationships with potential customers themselves.
Another critic point mentioned is that big corporates tend to buy innovation instead of embedding it into their own business model. This is why we don’t purchase innovation from outside but rather develop IoT proofs of concepts together with the startups in the framework of a co-innovation program. In the SAP IoT Startup Accelerator we keep an eye on the important key facts for the success of our customers. Therefore our goal is to bring the best of both worlds together: innovation and fresh ideas from the startups and expertise as well as an established customer base from SAP’s side.
Having fun with my colleagues from the SAP IoT Startup Accelerator at the opening event.