Operational Management for late stage startups.
Founding a startup is never easy. As a serial entrepreneur I have a proven track record in helping founders growing their business, helping them work with investors and balancing their lives. I work with founders and their team to help them focus on their strengths and build an organization that can complements them. In focusing on the areas where I have my own superpowers, I help founders with:
Organizations look very different when they have 5 people to when they grow to 70, 150 or 500 people. I work with teams to adapt an organization to the growth phase. This sometimes means scaling down and extending the runway.
As a founder you need to be able to look into the future, and need to know when to push harder before there is good data to support this. At the same time you need to say ”No” to most things and stick to your core focus.
Product Market Fit:
Many startups get funded before they have achieved product market fit. Or things are muddy, some things work some don’t.
Structuring VC deals
Navigating cap tables and deal structures is a delicate topic. While lawyers help with the details, often investors and founders alike benefit from getting an outside view on how to align or realign their interests.
Evolving Leadership style
Fast growing companies mean an evolution in leadership style over time. Often founders have to evolve from functional specialist into leading a larger organisation while avoiding corporate politics. I’ve evolved from a really not great leader earlier in my career to someone who leads mostly by mentoring.
Cofounder & CEO of Sustainable Aero Lab (2021-present)
Within 12 months, built the world’s leading accelerator for the future of aviation. More than 25 world class mentors from aviation as well as investors and entrepreneurs and more than 32 startups mentored so far.
Mentor at Creative Destruction Lab, Toronto and Oxford (2016-present)
Joined CDL Toronto as one of the first European mentors, one of the first mentors at CDL at Oxford University. Coached more than 80 startups throughout the programme.
Active Angel Investor with a focus in AI (2016-present)
Active investments in 15 startups, mostly in North America.
Member of the Advisory Board, Lufthansa Innovation Hub (2018-2021)
Founder & CEO FLIO the Global Airport App (2014-2019)
Built and ran a global “super app” for aiport users, loved by business and leisure travellers. Learned that a great ranking in the app store does not make for a great business model and sold the company in 2019.
Founder & CEO 9flats.com (2010-2013)
Founded and scaled the first large competitor to AirBnB, included the acquisition and integration of much larger competitor Wimdu.com.
Founder & CEO Qype.com (2006-2010)
Created one of the most recognized and successful brands in Web 2.0 in Europe with more than 16 Million Users and 40,000 business partners. Sold to Yelp.com in 2013
Co-founder & Chairman avocadostore.de (2010-2013)
Co-founded and defined business strategy for Germany’s largest eco-marketplace
Product Director Bild.de, turnaround of large online media.
Head of Northern Europe, lastminute.com, IPO 2000
Started career at Bertelsmann,
founded travelchannel, one of the first online travel agents in Germany
Locations & Industries & Scope
I am a global citizen who loves travelling and am living in different locations. Hence I can help remotely but also onsite in Europe and Canada. As a trained mechanical engineer with MBA I can apply my thinking to a wide range of industries. Deep experience in Media, Travel, Aviation, Ai, Health. My scope ranges from being an advisor for a few calls a month to being available as a co-founder for certain periods.