Hub:raum Looks to the East (and South) with Krakow Incubator

By David Knight |

One of Berlin’s economic advantages is its geographical position at the heart of Europe straddling the divide between east and west. It makes it easier to expand into Eastern Europe, which is fast becoming the next high-growth region for startups. Hub:raum has certainly not wasted anytime moving in that direction – Deutsche Telekom’s accelerator and incubator arm announced on Thursday that it will be adding a location in Krakow, the beating heart of entrepreneurship and technology in Poland.

The new incubator will not just target Polish startups, however, but young companies from across Central and Southern Europe. Just as in the Berlin version, the program – part of Polish offshoot T-Mobile Poland – will offer a package of seed funding, co-working space, mentoring and access to DT assets such as users, technology and infrastructure.

It’s all part of Telekom’s policy of external innovation, through both hub:raum and partnerships – the latter of which really kicked into life in Berlin recently with the DT Evernote hackathon.

Mark Klein, who enjoys the wonderfully corporate title of senior vice president commercial excellence Europe, said: “Krakow is one of the most important and most dynamically developing centers of innovation in Europe, which offers a number of initiatives supporting startups. We believe that its strong academic and startup community combined with domestic and international conferences on innovation and technology held in the city with a very high frequency … creates a perfect ground for locating hub:raum.”

The goal for the new program is to enroll five projects this year, he added. The Berlin incubator has signed up four – Blinkist, Stylemarks, Salonmeister and Reputami – since its launch in the middle of 2012.

According to its website, the first member of the hub:raum Krakow team is Cosmin Ochisor, while mentors include Artur Kurasinski and Jakub Lipinski.