German Startup Beats the Dragons
Mark Marich (GEW global)
Nov 22, 2011
Tobias Modjesch of Germany won the finale of the European entrepreneurship competition Meet the Dragons 2011 with YOUCOOK, a company that wants to take over the European consumer market with its healthy and fresh ready-to-eat meals.
Over 700 people were in Rotterdam to attend the event, held in conjunction with Global Entrepreneurship Week 2011.
Seven European finalists had 2.5 minutes each to convince the Dragons -- a panel of top international entrepreneurs -- that his or her start-up was going to be the next big thing. After a first selection by the Dragons, the audience chose Modjesch as the winner. Only a few votes behind was the Dutch startup Zebralegal run by Conny Bergsma and Bastiaan de Wit, who came in second place. In his thank you speech, Modjesch said he felt lucky to be chosen as the audience favorite, especially because the Germans had just beat the Dutch in a football match the previous evening.
As winner of the public's prize, Modjesch opened the Amsterdam Stock Exchange the following morning. He was in the company of an international delegation including Ted Zoller of the Kauffman Foundation, Henk Keilman, top entrepreneur and known from the KRO program 'Dragons Den', and Nevzat Aydin, a renowned Turkish entrepreneur and investor.
HOPE, the Holland Program on Entrepreneurship, has organized Meet the Dragons three years running. HOPE is a cooperation between three universities in South Holland and aims to to stimulate entrepreneurship among young people. During this year's Meet the Dragons, the 'De Investeerdersclub' at Erasmus University was also officially launched.
Global Entrepreneurship Week
The Netherlands celebrates Global Entrepreneurship Week for the fourth time the 14th through the 20th of November. 160 activities are planned to help young people discover the entrepreneur in themselves. In total, more than 50 organizations are participating, including the Ministry of Economic Affairs, the Chamber of Commerce, MKB Nederland, the Kauffman Foundation and the centers for entrepreneurship at various universities and institutes of higher education.
For more information, check www.gewnederland.nl.
Blog post contributed by HOPE, the host of GEW/Netherlands