SMART INFRASTRUCTURE VENTURES

FUNDING INQUIRY

 

Who we are

Smart Infrastructure Ventures is a heterogeneous group of successful entrepreneurs, founders & investors. We are supported by a likeminded international network of advisors, corporate partners & co-investors. In addition we are proud to call the award-winning SpinLab – The HHL Accelerator our family as well as the renowned HHL Leipzig Graduate School of Management, who has several times been awarded as the best university for entrepreneurship, our friends.

 

Our Focus

STAGES

Our investment focus is early stage startups and unlike some other VCs: we really mean early – don’t worry too much about turnover (yet)! When we invest in a team of founders we are usually the startup’s first professional investor. At that point the company may have raised some money from the FFFs (friends, family & fools – oh and maybe from some angels too ;-), released an MVP and gained first customer traction. We typically invest a low six digit Euro amount as a first investment in a pre-seed or seed round but keep significant capital for follow-on rounds.

SECTORS

As our name Smart Infrastructure Ventures suggests, we especially like anything surrounding smart city, energy, proptech, e-mobility, IoT, ehealth etc. – sometimes it is as easy as that! And although smart infrastructure is our focus, we would still like to hear from you in case your team is operating in potentially related areas. Please contact us as well if you believe your startup could be the next big thing – we will definitely take a look.

GEOGRAPHY

We at Smart Infrastructure Ventures think globally, feel at home in Europe, operate Germany-wide, have a regional interest in East Germany as it’s our home soil and have an office at Baumwollspinnerei in Leipzig. Especially if you are a founder from East Germany: let’s have a chat about what you are trying to achieve! Although we are investing Germany-wide we believe that startups benefit most from our hands-on approach and extensive network if they are not only mentally approachable but as well locationally accessible.

 

How we work

Of course we believe that our approach to venture capital and how we operate is different to other VCs – at least that’s what we think and our investors as well as previous business angel investments say. There are no employees at Smart Infrastructure Ventures. Everyone who is involved in the investment process has skin in the game. This ensures more efficient decision making alongside an increased accountability and of course an alignment of interest. In addition we leverage the resources and networks of SpinLab – The HHL Accelerator and Smart Infrastructure Hub. We believe that our portfolio companies as well as our investors will benefit from this set-up.

 

TEAM

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Dirk Frohnert

Founding Partner

After Dirk‘s stint in the German Air Force he studied internationally in Stellenbosch (South Africa), The Principality of Liechtenstein and at Copenhagen Business School. Afterwards he spent more than 10 years as a fund manager at JPMorgan in London. While investing as a business angel he seriously caught the startup bug and moved to Berlin. When he is not busy attending startup events, he can be found at a gig or enjoying a local craft beer. Dirk holds a MSc from University of Liechtenstein and is a CFA Charterholder.

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Björn Bauermeister

Founding Partner

Björn knows his stuff around assessing market values for illiquid assets. During the financial crisis he was a trader for complex financial products and survived! He worked for investments banks like BNP Paribas and called trading floors in New York and London his home. Moving from London to Leipzig was an adventure, but his 2 daughters and a RB Leipzig season ticket helped him to adjust quickly. Björn holds a Diploma (FH) from the Leuphana University of Lüneburg and is a CFA Charterholder.

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David Dimitrov

Venture Partner: General Management & Controlling

David likes number, all of them! As a former head of controlling at Spreadshirt and current COO of smow, excel is one of his best friends. In addition to his number addiction, he has a good nose for businesses and his angel investments. David holds an MBA from HHL - Leipzig Graduate School of Management.

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Roman Dudenhausen

Venture Partner: Energy & Mobility

Roman lives and breathes energy which can as well be seen via his energetic outfits. He co-founded con | energy and several other companies within the energy & mobility sectors and is an advisor to ChargePoint & Linse Capital. Roman holds a Diploma and a PhD from University of Duisburg-Essen.

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Roland Fassauer

Venture Partner: Software & Product Management

Many say they’ve seen it all but Roland actually has – a very active business angel and serial entrepreneur of several successful & exited companies (one of them even had an IPO on NASDAQ). Roland holds a Diploma from TH Leipzig and a PhD from Leipzig University. He is a professor at CODE University Berlin.

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Michael Petersen

Venture Partner: Strategy & Scaling

Michael knows what he is doing and he is in charge. As a previous CFO of spreadshirt and current CEO of smow he knows a thing or two about setting up and especially scaling a succesful business – both, online and offline. Michael holds a Diploma from HHL - Leipzig Graduate School of Management.

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Frank Stummer

Venture Partner: Software & Business Development

Frank likes to get to the bottom of things just like a modern-day Sherlock Holmes: as a digital forensic. He founded several startups within IT security, is an expert in providing forensic analysis services of network traffic and a hands-on business angel. Frank holds a Diploma from TU Freiberg and earned his PhD from the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research in Karlsruhe.

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Eric Weber

Co-Founder & Venture Partner: SmartCity

Startups first! From startup mentor to multiple startup jury member: Eric is the founder and CEO of one of Europe’s top ranked startup accelerators: SpinLab – The HHL Accelerator. He holds a MSc from Leipzig University and a PhD from HHL - Leipzig Graduate School of Management.

An ecosystem for startups that goes beyond funding

Startups we invest in, have the option to also take advantage of our entire ecosystem. Beyond our VC fund, your startup can also benefit from offers from our incubator based in Hannover, and our research and initiative project, as well as our accelerator, which are both based right here in Leipzig.

LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR ECOSYSTEM

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