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WHU’s Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Secures over US$2B in Investments

Start-ups founded by WHU alumni find success this year despite difficult economic landscape in Germany

They’re called Enpal. Or Flink. Or Gropyus. And, for start-ups, they have been remarkably successful in their respective industries. While recent estimates show that Germany just narrowly avoided an economic recession, many of the initiatives started by WHU’s alumni have continued to grow strongly. These and countless other companies are all part of the entrepreneurial ecosystem at WHU, which, all told, secured over US$2B during 2023. “Despite challenging macroeconomic conditions, we see that companies in WHU’s ecosystem continue to convince investors to provide funding for sustainable growth,” said Professor Dries Faems, Chair of Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Technological Transformation, of the impressive amount of investment. “A promising new generation of start-ups is already on its way, and hopefully they will be the next wave of successful stories in the coming years.”

Some of these start-ups, five of which successful in securing over US$100M during their respective financial rounds, have already reached “unicorn” status, i.e., having a market value of over US$1B. To date, WHU’s graduates have produced 15 unicorns. According to special report Europe’s New Tech Founders 2023, WHU alumni are second only to the world-renowned Oxford University in the number of unicorns they have founded.

The WHU Entrepreneurship Center—which has dedicated itself to establishing and maintaining a prolific network of alumni, currently enrolled students, colleagues, and corporate entities— plays a vital role in supporting these start-ups. It acts as the intermediary between aspiring founders, potential investors, student-run organizations, faculty members, and more. And it ensures that members of the WHU Community benefit from its extensive network and gain access to the information, expertise, and other resources they need.

A more detailed look at WHU’s entrepreneurial ecosystem can be found in this press kit (in German).

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