Last week, the Think Digital scholarship holders followed the invitation of Judith Gerlach, the Bavarian State Minister for Digital Affairs, to the Digital Ministry.
It may have started life as a crazy idea, but today Airbnb – an online platform where individuals in over 190 countries can rent out their rooms or apartments – is worth 25 billion dollars. At Monday evening’s DLD Campus lecture at Munich's LMU, Airbnb co-founder and CTO Nathan Blecharczyk took around 250 attendees on a fascinating journey through the company’s history.
This is the seventh time that Burda has collaborated with the Internet Business Cluster (IBC) and opened its DLD digital conference to students and anyone else interested in the topic.
The likeable 31-year-old took a humorous and self-deprecating look at the obstacles they faced when setting up the company. From looking for the right investor to doubts and crises – and, ultimately, the success of the platform. He then answered questions from the students and from Stefan Winners, Board Member at Hubert Burda Media, who moderated the discussion. Stefan asked how the three founders, who are still co-managing the company after eight years, made it such a success: “We have totally different personalities, but that’s what makes us strong”, said Blecharczyk. Anyone wanting to set up a company must choose their partners well.
Inspiring words for the talented youngsters in the audience, some of whom are working on their own start-ups. The students (also potential recruits for the IBC companies) flocked to speak to Blecharczyk at the subsequent get together. Over music and drinks, they chatted with Burda’s board members and the other IBC representatives.
The IBC encompasses Burda, the internet and media companies Tomorrow Focus, ProSiebenSat.1 and SapientNitro, LMU Munich and the University of Regensburg. Through events like the DLD Campus lecture, the IBC aims to build a bridge between science and industry and to position itself among up-and-coming digital talents and attractive employers.