Germany has one of the most vital startup scenes in Europe. And according to our research in 2016, Berlin is actually Europe’s 2nd largest startup hub, right after London. In the beginning of this year we took a close look at the German startup landscape with the goal to introduce you to 10 of the most promising early-stage startups that are worth paying attention to in 2017.
Given the large amount of exciting startups from Germany, it’s been hard to narrow this list down to just 10 candidates. But we did it. All of the companies we’re presenting you below entered the market within the last two years and each one of them has (in our view) a successful year ahead.
Watchmaster makes buying and selling luxury watches online comfortable, safe, and fast. The mission of the Berlin-based startup is to create a digital platform for luxury watches that combines the security and service of a classic jeweler with the comfort and excellent prices of eCommerce. Watchmaster’s collection of classy and authentic timepieces are offered to you for up to 30% below the listing prices. Founded in 2015, Watchmaster has secured about €15.5 million in venture capital.
solarisBank is a tech company with a German banking license. The Berlin-based startup has built an API-accessible banking platform for the needs of the digital economy. Officially founded in 2016, the solarisBank platform enables digital businesses to create custom solutions for their unique financial needs. Together with its partners, solarisBank works towards the vision to boost the growth of the digital economy by offering payment services, banking services, and add-on services.
SMACC aims to make financial management as simple and seamless as possible for small and medium-sized companies. The Berlin-based startup wants to provide your company with more time to focus on your product, your clients, your people – while providing you with much more financial transparency and control. The SMACC team believes that cloud-technology paired with a business-focused digital process can lead to a accounting revolution. SMACC was founded in 2015 and raised €3.5 million in a Series A funding round in the summer of 2016.
Grover: The Berlin-based startup Grover aims to reinventing consumption with a simple, on-demand subscription model for the products you love. For roughly 5% of the retail price, Grover users can rent electronics for a month and try before they buy. Plus, users can extend their rental experience up to one year, paying a monthly fee for holding on to the device. Founded in 2015, Grover raised about $1.1 million in seed funding so far.
Clark is a fintech startup operating in the insurance vertical by offering smart comparable solutions for insurance products to German retail customers. The insurance platform Clark aims to provide transparent, cheap and comprehensive insurance coverage by combining technology and insurance expertise. Clark is supported by the Berlin-based fintech incubator FinLeap and the insurance think tank ITA – “Institute for Transparency”. Founded in 2015 with offices in Frankfurt and Berlin, Clark secured €13.2 million in a Series A funding round, which has been closed in the Summer of 2016.
Honeypot: For HR professionals, CTOs and founders, Honeypot aimst to offer the easiest and most efficient solution to find skilled developers. The Honeypot platform connects developers and companies directly, providing transparency and speed to both sides. Developers on Honeypot have a 90% response rate and it takes an average of 25 days to make a hire. Founded in 2015 in Berlin, Honeypot today is Europe’s leading developer-focused job platform.
CANDIS: Founded in the summer of 2015, the Berlin-based startup CANDIS aims to make financial workflows intelligent. The ambitious team created an artificial intelligence tool for automated processing of a company’s financial workflows. CANDIS collects and handles all invoices and makes sure everyone is paid on time, saving 80% of manual work. The young company secured €1 million seed funding in 2016 and an undisclosed amount of follow-on funding in January of 2017.
Kasko is the first digital insurance platform for on-demand insurance products to enable insurance companies and brokers to quickly bring to market new on-demand insurance products. Founded in 2015, KASKO allows digital businesses to cross-sell contextually relevant insurance products at the point-ofdemand using the Kasko plugin or API. Kasko has a FCA-Licence for the UK as well as a German Bafin licence. The startup is based in Hamburg (Germany) and London (UK). In 2015 Kasko secured about $680K in seed funding.
Zeitgold aims to free small businesses from paperwork. By combining experts and artificial intelligence, the Berlin-based startup offers an end-to-end solution for managing the financials of cafés, restaurants, small retailers, and craftsmen. Zeitgold empowers the owners to get bookkeeping, payroll, invoice payment, collections and coordination with the tax advisor done in less than 10 minutes per day on their smartphones, saving around 10 hours per week. Zeitgold was founded in 2015 and just raised €4.2 million in venture capital.
Kontist believes freelancers will shape the future of work, challenging corporate structures, embracing individuality and building successful businesses. The FinTech startup Kontist aims to provide the banking services freelancers deserve. Kontist makes finances easy with paperless bank account opening, mobile banking and more. Officially founded in 2016, the Berlin-based startup already secured €2 million in seed funding.
By the way: If you’re a corporate or investor looking for exciting startups in a specific market for a potential investment or acquisition, check out our Startup Sourcing Service!