On Thursday, March 16, 2017, Frankfurt School of Finance & Management hosted the first Start-up Night on its campus. More than 50 start-ups and 400 guests joined the networking and recruiting event that brought together founders, entrepreneurs and start-ups from all over Germany with young talents from Frankfurt School.
Dr Heike Brost, Head of Degree Programmes & Executive Education at Frankfurt School, welcomed the guests and was very pleased to see so many alumni returning to Frankfurt School with their own start-ups to recruit current students. Afterwards Professor Dr Philipp Sandner, head of the FS Blockchain Center, set the tone for the following panel on “Talent matters?! Recruiting for creative destruction”. He encouraged the students to be pragmatic and creative, to follow their passion and to embrace trial and error.
“How did you know, you where start-up material?” asked Professor Dr Nils Stieglitz, Professor for Strategic Management and Head of Frankfurt School’s Management Department, who hosted the panel with Chris Bartz, FS Alumnus, CEO and Co-Founder at Elinvar as well as former Venture Partner at FinLeap; Mark Korzilius, Founder of Farmers Cut and Vapiano; Michael Koch, Head of Digital Factory & Online/Mobile Banking at Deutsche Bank; Stefan Rühle, CEO and Founder of Talentschmiede; and Boris Behringer, Director of the Porsche Digital Lab Berlin. While each had a specific answer to the question, the general gist was that the will to learn, to build something and to take up responsibility were crucial factors in becoming a successful entrepreneur.
After the panel discussion, students and guests had ample opportunity to get to know the different start-ups and to look for job opportunities or future cooperations. Marcia Davidson, a Master exchange student from Stellenbosch University in South Africa, was eager to check out the participating start-ups: “I’m in the process of starting a company myself. So tonight, I’m looking for possible strategic partnerships and maybe some advice from people, who have already taken the step.”
Alexander Felber, Founder and Managing Partner of KidsWoodLove and alumnus of Frankfurt School’s Master of Finance programme, had a fruitful evening talking to other founders about financing rounds and lessons learnt, as well as recruiting students for internships at his company.
“We are really happy to be here”, said Philipp Keus, Head of Sales at Mynd, another FS alumni start-up. “It is really great that Frankfurt School took the initiative to bring together the start-up community in Frankfurt. Of course we wanted to be a part of this. We already have one working student from Frankfurt School and today we met some great young talents.”
Frankfurt School alumnus Joshua Märker, Relationship Manager at Creditshelf, was looking forward to an evening on the main FS campus and to hear students’ ideas on the developments in the world of FinTechs: “This night is a great way to promote Frankfurt as a start-up and FinTech hub. As we are always looking to boost our brand it’s a good opportunity for us.”