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Digitization - German companies prefer working with startups to working with US companies

The corporate world is changing and some hurdles have to be overcome. Startups play a major role in the digitization of German companies.

German companies now recognize the importance of digitization and the need to adjust to digital change. However, the implementation is not so easy, and what are the effects of digitization on startups?

To answer this question, we have to take a look at the etventure study „Digital Transformation and Cooperation with Startups

To 50% of German companies digitization is one of the top 3 topics. The topic is more important in the US, it’s regarded a top 3 topic by 66% of US companies.

The hurdles of digitization in Germany are a missing focus on users and implementation, lack of time, flexibility, experience, defense of existing structures, and fear of job cuts. All of these hurdles are hardly important anymore in the US.

To keep up with digital change, German companies are increasingly getting help from the outside, for example from consulting and cooperating with startups.

Currently, 35% of German companies are cooperating with startups, this cooperation is overrated in the US, only 14% of US companies cooperate with startups. Eight percent of German companies are planning to work with startups.

Most of large German companies view cooperating with young, newly founded companies as an opportunity (63%). In the US, only 46% think that cooperating with startups is helpful.

A very common form of cooperation in Germany is the networking of employees of companies and startups (72%). 38% of companies working with startups are directly involved in a startup. Another 27% have a venture program or launched a fund.

The main interest in cooperating for almost every large German concern (90%) is particularly to get access to new technologies (88%) and develop innovations more quickly (87%).

After all, 71% think that due to cooperating with startups, they are able to make better product offerings to customers. Approximately about one in two companies in this country (47%) would like to outsource its research and development activities to startups.

Cooperation Difficulties

German companies particularly think that the difficulties in cooperating with startups are a lack of understanding for processes in large companies (82%), different security requirements (80%) as well as differences in corporate cultures (73%).

Nevertheless, large German companies are convinced of cooperating with startups: 76% of the companies already working with startups want to expand their cooperation in the future.

The cooperation between German companies and startups has become a strategic factor to make up for the lack of time, implementation skills or a lack of digital experience. US companies are rather uninterested in cooperating with startups.

“What we can take from that is that, in Germany, process optimization and gains in efficiency are particularly associated with digitization, in the US it’s also growth through new digital business models”, explains Philipp Depiereux, founder and managing director of the digital consulting and startup specialist company “etventure”.

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