Recently I was honored to be invited to speak at the members-only pre-opening of the digital HUB Cologne about “What Startups Need”.
Spoiler alert: It isn’t corporate partners and digital hubs.
The digital hubs in the state of NRW in Germany is a political construct part financed with public money. It’s supposed to support and help small and medium companies get onboard with “digitalisation”, whatever that term means.
As you might know, I’m much more of a libertarian than a socialist, so I’m not the biggest fan of this publicly funded hub concept for a number of reasons.
- I don’t believe taxpayers should be subsidising private enterprises
- If the market had wanted or needed a “digital hub”, it would have created one already by itself
- The market is Darwinistic and self- correcting – putting public support-wheels or bandaids on failing businesses is wrong
- Creating publicly funded competition to existing local business offerings is wrong
You get the drift.
In sum, I think it’s a political innovation theatre paid for in part by us the taxpayers.
These were the slides I used: