Fintech Initiative

Deutsche Bank's Fertility Dance

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Deutsche Bank's new partnership with an Axel Springer unit is meant to bring new life to Berlin's vibrant startup scene.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Deutsche Bank is upping its involvement in financial and insurance startups, joining with Berlin startup accelerator ASPnP to invest in the best new firms in the field.

  • Facts

    Facts

    • In a break with its previous approach, Deutsche Bank will directly invest in newly-founded tech companies, particularly financial and insurance-related startups.
    • Last year German banks represented just 4 percent of investment in German fintech startups. But in recent months, they have substantially increased their startup investments.
    • American financial giants Citi and Goldman Sachs each hold stakes in 24 fintechs, while Deutsche Bank’s German rival Commerzbank has invested in 12.
  • Audio

    Audio

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The building in Berlin’s alternative Kreuzberg district is not the kind of place you’d expect to see managers from Deutsche Bank. But the graffiti-sprayed 1970s office block is home to Axel Springer Plug and Play, or ASPnP, one of the leading “accelerators” in Berlin’s thriving startup scene.

A collaboration between German publisher Axel Springer and California’s Plug and Play Tech Center, ASPnP picks promising startups, finances them for 100 days, then chooses the best to continue to support. Now Deutsche Bank is joining the venture.

The cooperation was announced Monday. Deutsche Bank will sit on the ASPnP selection committee, picking the hottest technology startups to enter the program, including new firms in banking and insurance. The companies chosen will be offered finance and development help. For Deutsche Bank, that means offering know-how and access to the bank’s customer base.

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