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Jan Zybura

Jan Zybura

We are happy to look back at a both highly successful and eventful spring semester 2018. The semester started with a partner event with Startup Mannheim & Up2B’s FireCamp hosting Morten Lund on February 19. On February 20, the 2nd MCEI annual Seed Award took place. One of the semester highlights: We celebrated our 50th Startup Lounge with our first Startup Lounge speaker ever: David Minkovski. It was so much fun to see the vibrant startup ecosystem that has developed at and around the University of Mannheim at Q-Summit and the Career Fair was a fantastic opportunity to participate with “Startup as a Career Choice” at a dedicated MCEI booth.

Of course, we also continued our Startup Lounge and Founder Talk event series, our accelerator-style course formats Entrepreneurial Spirit (MAN 633) and Thinking Beyond Boxes (MAN 453)  and our classes Advanced Entrepreneurship (MAN 632), Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Business Model Design (MAN 450), and International Entrepreneurship and Managing Change (MAN 636). The following more in-depth perspective along our core pillars Education, Support and Inspiration will provide your with more detailed information on our teaching activities, support programs and events.

Education & Support

Our accelerator-style classes MAN 453 Thinking Beyond Boxes – Advance Your Startup and MAN 633 Entrepreneurial Spirit reached the next level. In our bachelor course, eight teams advanced their own startup projects: 4Channels, CareerTerminal, Safe Maps, Trenty, Hugo Benassi, Picarar, Fam4Events, and Softsourced. In the master course, 3 student teams participated to achieve their next steps towards scaling their ventures: Aunty Emma´s, BusinessBoost and Behemain. The final two-staged pitch battle with an external jury revealed the high level of development the teams have undergone throughout the program. The three finalists competed in our semester closing pitch battle in Startup Lounge #52.

In Track 1, the startup support scheme Inside the Venture projects of MAN 633, a staggering 12 projects were conducted with the Mannheim Startups balloonas, Eazy (2 projects), GetSafe (2 projects), Mirabesque, Angels4health, Mister Trip (2 projects), Orderpoints, RoadAds and TreyeTech. Individual project reports on our Inside the Venture pages will follow shortly.

The courses MAN 636 International Entrepreneurship and Managing Change, MAN 632 Advanced Entrepreneurship, MAN 450 (Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Business Model Design were held. MAN 632 has seen a major revamp this year with a focus on entrepreneurial strategy and more team presentations. Also, several Master Theses in the field of entrepreneurship were successfully completed as Inside the Venture Projects at Crashtest Security, Anyon, ku.bus, Miamed, freachly and two projects on MCEI’s startup ecosystem. Individual project reports on our Inside the Venture pages will follow shortly.

Inspirational Events

The first event of the year was a partner event together with Up2B and Startup Mannheim. The opening ceremony of the FireCamp was hosted at the University of Mannheim and we were happy to welcome Morten Lund. Morten Lund is Denmark´s best known investor and he shared insights about how he managed to develop and invest in more than 200 startups and shared his lessons learned. Find the event report here.

Only one day later, we celebrated the beginning of the Startup Lounge season with a special highlight – the MCEI Seed Award 2018. A prize money of 10,000 EUR was awarded to the most prospective startup of University of Mannheim students and alumni who started their business in 2017. We thank the Heinrich-Vetter-Foundation for donating the prize money and supporting the local startup scene. The team of Mirabesque convinced the jury the most and won this year´s Seed Award. They will use the award to further advance their business. Also, good luck to all the other participants which made the selection and the award ceremony highly competitive one. Find the event report with more detailed information on participating startups and criteria here.  

During the semester, we welcomed RoadAds, understandAI and Comtravo as part of our regular Startup Lounges. In April, we celebrated our 50th Startup Lounge. David Minkovski is serial entrepreneur and was the speaker of our very first Startup Lounge on November 19, 2013. David looked back at the developments over the past 4.5 years and reflected on the major learnings and pieces of advice next to pitching his current startup aviatoo. Many thanks again to David and all our guests for making this anniversary such a memorable event. In another special in May, we offered a Legal Lounge with Dr. Victoria Berger (Corporate Law), Jessica Maier (IP) and Dominik Gallini (Employment Law) from Melchers in order to support our startups and future founders with the legal background they need to found their own venture. There was plenty of room for specific questions. Thanks again to the speakers for putting up the legal workshop ahead of the Startup Lounge and being so supportive. Our semester closing Startup Lounge #52 featured the MAN 633/ MAN 453 Pitch Battle with the finalists Aunty Emma´s, Business Boost and CareerTerminal live on stage pitching in front of an expert jury. Congratulations again to CareerTerminal for winning the PitchBattle. A big thank you goes to the team of the Café L3, for the great support with our Startup Lounges and other events. We are looking forward to many more Startup Lounges to come!

Next to the joint Kickoff with Up2B/ Startup Mannheim and Morten Lund, we welcomed Kilian Wagner, co-founder of VIU Eyewear, in the context of a Founder Talk. He shared lots of invaluable insights for young founders and gave advice based on his entrepreneurial experience. VIU Eyewear is expanding rapidly and revolutionizing the eyewear industry.

MCEI participated in two university-wide flagship events in the spring semester: The University of Mannheim Career Fair and Q-Summit. At the Career Fair (17th-19th April) we put up our our booth "Startup as a Career Choice" and the founder teams of Comtravo,, TreyeTech and Envote gave broad insights into the exciting world of founding your own business out of university.

Secondly, we participated as a partner in the Q-Summit. The conference is organized by students from the University of Mannheim and focuses on innovation and entrepreneurship. After premiering last year, the conference was taken to the next level this year. We were happy to host several startups (covexo, Mirabesque, SurveyCircle, Alugha. V|O Coffee, FairDeal Institute, RoadAds and TreyeTech) at our MCEI-tent in the Inno Village, giving them the possibility to present their ideas and ventures and to get in touch with likeminded people and potential customers. Additionally, we offered a 3D-Printing corner in cooperation with elaspix to help participants explore the possibilities of 3D-printing technology. Also, Dr. Jan Zybura of MCEI was moderating a panel discussion about the future of education with Daniel Jung (Youtuber & Co-founder of StudyHelp) and Volker Schebesta (State Secretary within the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports).mcei

We thank all our supporters, partners and program participants for living the entrepreneurial spirit and making these formats happen! We are already looking forward to the 2nd half of the year!!

More news about the MCEI

Elisabeth Gourlin and Kai Bruchmüller will leave the MCEI team by the beginning of the new semester after finishing their studies. Therefore, there will be new vacancies starting from beginning of August / September 2018. If you are interested in our MCEI initiatives and want to work with us, please submit your application documents via e-mail. We currently have 3 openings and contract duration (performance permitting) is at least one year.

  • PR & CRM (40hrs/month)
  • Event Management (40hrs/month)
  • Content Management (40hrs/month)


The INTEGRA Inside the Venture consulting project at Mint Medical GmbH (a DKFZ spin-off) comprised the development of a multimedial communication strategy. The focus was set on the analysis and preparation of potentially relevant markets as well as clearly defined target groups. In particular, best practices and needs were identified. On the basis of this information, a catalog of measures for the optimal design of the online appearance was developed. Customer workshops were held for target group analyses, evaluation criteria were defined, a social media strategy was prepared and handed over to the customer. A final presentation was held within the management to outline implementation and future implications. The consultants on the Mint Medical project were Dennis Wagner, Jana Kilgus, Hande Gao and Nikolas Kaupke. The project was conducted in Spring Term 2016.

We thank INTEGRA and the team for this excellent project!


Wednesday, 09 December 2015 17:22

Growth Strategie for praktischArzt

This INTEGRA Inside the Venture project focused on developing a growth strategy for praktischArzt. The consulting project was led by Christioph Seiler and conducted in Fall Term 2015. 

We thank INTEGRA for the great support and the team for their excellent work!

This INTEGRA Inside the Venture project was conducted by Nadja Braun, Philipp Sternal, Christian Schoupal, Florian Steffens, and Stephan Sattler. The objective of the consulting project was to evaluate current growth measures and figures and develop a full-fledged expansion strategy for zingoo in Germany. zingoo offers customers the opportunity to purchase vouchers of small local businesses online.

In particular, the project included:

  • a profound market analysis including a dedicated competitor analysis
  • analyzing targeted customer segments and partners by socio-economic measures
  • identifying and ranking potential locations
  • developing an expansion roadmap
  • delivering an expansion process that is replicable for all future locations
  • ensuring operationalizability of the results

The project was conducted in Fall Term 2015.

We thank the INTEGRA team for the outstanding results and their great support!


The content of this INTEGRA Inside the Venture consulting project was the development of a donation concept to ensure the long-term financing of the Children's Future Fund. The focus was on collecting, evaluating and recommending potential new donation channels and measures. Based on this, a catalog of requirements was developed to optimize the online appearance. In particular, client workshops were held, evaluation criteria and their weighting were determined, a decision support scoring model was prepared and handed over to the customer and a final presentation was held at the annual general meeting.

The INTEGRA team consisted of Simon Starfinger, Beatrice Schumache and Ines Sophie Scholtes. The project was conducted in Spring Term 2016.

We thank the team and INTEGRA for this outstanding project!


Monday, 09 January 2017 17:20

Market Opportunities for nanoku

Johann Maack, Maurice Ackel, Katharina Hennes and Pia Marie Pose have conducted this INTEGRA Inside the Venture project at nanoku. The startup nanoku saves you long waiting times. Instead of spending time with waiting on the spot, simply set yourself up in a virtual queue. Use the waiting time for meaningful activities and only come when you are really the next in line. 

The consulting project comprised the identification of market-side opportunities and risks for nanoku. The focus was set on carrying out a market analysis for the market of virtual queuing systems. In particular, target groups and competitors were identified, analyzed and interpreted. On the basis of this information, the market-side opportunities and risks for nanoku were evaluated using previously defined criteria dedicated to the young venture. Ultimately, a modular company presentation was created, which should provide nanoku advantages with regard to potential investors and their market entry.

The project was conducted in Spring Term 2016.

We thank INTEGRA and the team for this excellent project!


Wednesday, 09 December 2015 17:20

Business Development at Tripstant

INTEGRA conducted a comprehensive business development project at Tripstant. Tripstant is your mobile travel assistant. Planning your travels online can be frustrating : You have to compare prices, reservations and timetables constantly while still sticking to your preferred destinations. After finally booking your trip on different platforms you have to care about collecting the different tickets and documents. All of this is even harder, when planning a trip with your friends or relatives. Tripstant tackles these problems and gets the organization done for you. Its search features can find you a custom trip fitting your schedule, preferences and requirements - even when you are traveling in a group. If you do not like the suggestion you can decline it without any cost. 

The project was conducted in Fall Term 2016.

We thank the INTEGRA team for their outstanding work and their recommendations. 

Wednesday, 09 September 2015 17:17

Developing a Sales Strategy for the monomer GmbH

The objective of the consulting project was to evaluate the current marketing measures and develop a full-fledged sales strategy for monomer, specifically aiming at company growth and brand building. monomer offers jewelry that is designed digitally and then produced using 3D printing technology. The INTEGRA Inside the Venture team considted of Anna Kemp, Alexander Barkey, Jessica Horn and Johannes Geise. 

In particular, the project included:

  • a profound market analysis of the jewelry and luxury market
  • analyzing opportunities as well as risks regarding monomer’s business model
  • identifying and validating the targeted customer segments
  • deriving sales strategies catering the identified customer segments
  • detailed competitor analyses to identify best-practices in the luxury jewelry market and to map competition
  • preparation of sales measures as well as a list of potential sales partners
  • delivering a detailed implementation and sales strategy roadmap including a recommendation regarding monomer’s next steps of action

The project was conducted in Spring Term 2015.

We thank the INTEGRA team for their excellent work and support!


INTEGRA has supported Pediquick with well-researched market analyses and a marketing plan. Follow-up projects included an in-depth analysis auf the Swiss and the Austrian market, pricing analyses and screening potential investors. Project manager has been Tim Sauer. 

The first project was conducted in Fall Term 2016.

We thank INTEGRA and the teams for their great support!

The objective of this INTEGRA consulting project Inside the Venture that Karin Weitkaempfer, Dennis Wagner, Florentine Eitelbach, Johann Maack and Robin Ruhnau have conducted was to evaluate the current marketing measures (status quo) and to develop a full-fledged marketing strategy for Mister Trip in Germany.

In particular, the project included:

  • profound market analyses including a dedicated competitor analysis
  • analyzing targeted customer segments and prioritization
  • validating the current corporate strategy
  • evaluating current marketing measures
  • deriving a marketing strategy as well as a list of measures to be implemented
  • preparation of dedicated marketing measures that qualify for short-term implementation

The project was conducted in Fall Term 2015. 

We thank the INTEGRA team for their excellent work and support!

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  • University of Mannheim
  • Institut für Mittelstandsforschung
  • Gründerverbund
  • ESF
  • Europäische Union
  • Baden-Württemberg - Ministerium für Finanzen und Wirtschaft
  • Absolventum