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Christoph Fahle
March 13, 2012

BETAPITCH 2012 - Meet the Jury: Wolfgang Wopperer

As you may have heard, betahaus | Berlin is moving! We’re starting fresh in a brand new space after nearly ten years in operation. We couldn’t be more excited, but we know any big change takes adjustment. Have questions about our new coworking space in Berlin? Curious about what comes next? We’ve got answers.

The next betapitch | Berlin is on its way, preparations are in full effect, and the whole betahaus crew can hardly wait to get your onepagers into their hands. We also want to get that fire into you, get you ready for your pitch, and help you prepare as best as you can. So from now on we will supply you with more background info on some of the judges, in the form of interviews. This week we will start with Wolfgang Wopperer. Enjoy!

Wolfgang Wopperer: betapitch Berlin 2012 Jury Member

Wolfgang Wopperer is a self-described “trained philosopher and untrained entrepreneur”, and co-founder of software development company mindmatters.de. He is currently based in Hamburg, and is also the co-founder of betahaus Hamburg

You are the cofounder of mindmatters, and you write that you apply the principles of analytic philosophy to founding a startup. How exactly does that work, and why is it important?

Basically it works because I believe that analytical philosophy and startup business are two things based on the principle of common sense. One thing I learned while studying philosophy was the importance of asking better questions and being critical of shallow answers. So what I expect from startups is that they too ask themselves questions, and be prepared to give more than just shallow answers in turn. For example, I think that the most crucial question for a startup to ask themselves is who their target market is, and what the real needs of this group are. I often say that the two questions I ask people are “what exactly do you mean?” and “how do you know?” – through asking these, I hope to motivate people to think in honest terms about the core idea of their product, and why their product would be so important to their target market.

Based on that, do you think that most startups these days are able to provide sufficient answers to those questions?

I think that there are too many startups that still ignore these basic questions – the current hype about startups doesn’t exactly help that, as there are now even more people founding startups just for the sake of founding a startup, and nothing else.

Aside from that; based on my experience, I find the ability of startups to answer these questions to whatever extent depends very much on the context in which they work. For example, the startups we are working with in Hamburg often lack a deep-enough understanding of international sensibilities and market forces, but have a good sense of doing local commerce. In Berlin, I find that there are a lot of creative people who have many good ideas and who understand the potential of the internet, but who sometimes lack a business perspective. It really depends on the individual strengths and weaknesses of the startups themselves.

Without giving too much away, what’s one piece of advice you would give to any startups competing in this year’s betapitch 2012?

My advice would be to try and answer one question as honestly as possible: the question of why any real customer or user would be interested in your product. The answer to it shouldn’t simply be “because I want them to be interested”. If a company pitches an idea to me, I am more likely to be interested if they relate it back to a real need that exists, and back that up with real-life examples.

The new space is six stories spread out across 2800 sqm. We’ll be renovating the building with our members in mind, so here’s what we can promise:

  • 5 Floors of Coworking Areas
  • Event Spaces
  • More Meeting Rooms
  • More Team Rooms
  • More Call Boxes
  • A Rooftop Terrace
  • A Café

We'll be updating The Move landing page with photos as we have them, so watch out for that!

when do you need a notary?

We’ll open the doors of our new space between mid-August and mid-September 2018. We plan to begin moving in July to ensure that the space is functional and comfortable by the time you get there. Bottom line, we’ll do everything we can to make the move as seamless as possible.

The move is our third big announcement of 2018 following the news that we’re be expanding our operations with betahaus | Tirana and managing coworking for Berlin’s new blockchain space, Full Node

The idea behind betahaus was never to be just a coworking space. We wanted to create a platform where people of our generation could thrive personally and professionally. We’ve always thought we could do this on a much bigger scale and we’re thrilled to see it happening. We’re excited about what we’re able to learn from this move, not just for betahaus, but for the future of coworking in Europe.

We’re sure you have a lot of questions about what’s coming next. 

We want to hear from you! Email us at themove@betahaus.com or join us for a closed Town Hall where we’ll answer all of your questions and talk through any concerns. We’ve also started members-only page for FAQs, resources, and important dates about the move (check your inbox!). 

We've got some big changes ahead of us, but one thing's for sure: we're so glad to have you with us for the ride!

We're looking forward to this new challenge, and will keep you updated along the way. Get in touch with any questions you might have about Full Node!

Not a blockchain startup but looking for a coworking space? Be sure to check out the flexible membership options at betahaus!

Finally, You describe your target group as LOHAS (Lifestyles of Health and Sustainability), which is a very niche market. Can you tell us more about what type of people they ARE and what theY value? What's some advice you can share to other startups targeting this market?

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betahaus BERLIN

Prinzessinnenstr. 19-20, 10969 Berlin
+49 30 609809270
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