Germany is sehr gut for startups and General Atlantic sagt heute

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Germany is sehr gut for startups and General Atlantic sagt heute Kicky

Germany is sehr gut for startups and General Atlantic sagt

Germany is the place to be when it comes to developing wireless technologies for commercial use, says Mr. Kern, GA's only partner based in Europe. Although the Scandinavian countries have a leg up on the rest of the world when it comes to using wireless devices, Germany is clearly where engineers are developing future wireless breakthroughs, Mr. Kern contends. He oversees GA's wireless Internet investments from his London office.

Germany has a reputation for welcoming startups, despite the prevailing preference Europeans still have for working at large, more traditional corporations. Startups based in Germany received the most VC out of all European startups in 1998, the most recent year for which the European Venture Capital Association has statistics. That year, German startups pulled in 28 percent of the $1.6 billion invested in early-stage European companies. French entrepreneurs came in second with 16 percent, and UK startups came in third with 11 percent.

Germany is also abuzz with technology companies because of its Neuer Markt, Germany's answer to the Nasdaq. Companies throughout Europe trade on the Neuer Markt. More than 200 companies are now listed on the 3-year-old stock exchange. It added 139 new companies last year alone, the vast majority of these being German.

Mr. Kern says Germany's thriving startup scene is hottest in Munich, with its combination of VCs, universities, and headquarters for large companies such as Siemens, and European outposts for Compaq (NYSE: CPQ) and Microsoft (Nasdaq: MSFT).

Apollis also expects to tap the Rhine River area -- Dusseldorf, Cologne, and Bonn -- where the main office for Europe's largest telecommunications concern Deutsche Telekom (NYSE: DT) is located. It will also move up to Berlin, which is coming on strong; the city boasts 130,000 university students, the most of any German city, he says.

Apollis plans to make investments of $2 million to $10 million in up to five companies by year's end and up to 10 more next year.

Those are puny investment projections for GA, which has more than $10 billion in active investments and $4 billion more at its disposal from partners in the firm, wealthy families, and corporations. In April, American International Group (NYSE: AIG) increased GA's kitty by 25 percent when it committed $1 billion to the VC over the next five years.

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