Premiere, pizza and perspectives - the Startup Meetup Lüneburg

2024-04-05 Lüneburg has caught up. With the first Startup Meetup, this internationally proven format can also be established in the region. "Now it's up to everyone involved to develop the exchange of company ideas, networking and planning around the topic of start-ups in the long term," said Patrick Pietruck, founder and Managing Director of webnetz on the occasion of the first evening with pizza, beer, table football and pool. The atmosphere was inspiring. The state politicians were able to gain an impression of the network of start-up stakeholders in Lüneburg.

Premiere, pizza and perspectives - the Startup Meetup Lüneburg ©webnetz
Premiere, pizza and perspectives - the Startup Meetup Lüneburg ©webnetz
Premiere, pizza and perspectives - the Startup Meetup Lüneburg ©webnetz

The need for personal encounters in the metropolitan area is palpable. This was demonstrated by the invitation from the former spin-off from Leuphana University Lüneburg. The online marketing company webnetz has now grown to 170 employees. The new company campus in Lüneburg's Hanseviertel district motivated over 100 start-ups, founders, politicians from the federal and state parliaments of Lower Saxony, business angels and funding organisations to seek personal dialogue.

The première was a solidarity between the local partners, and the message went out into the country. Lüneburg is taking off. The Meetup was jointly organised by the Hanseatic City of Lüneburg, IHK Lüneburg-Wolfsburg, Leuphana University Lüneburg, Utopia, webnetz and WLG - Wirtschaftsförderung Lüneburg.

"The première was important at this point in time," added Patrick Pietruck in conversation, "because it sends a signal for the future." In his opinion, Leuphana has a central role to play in this network. "We need sustainable start-up and early-stage financing in the region." The university is the "natural driver, player and anchor" for identifying and supporting young founders and then working with partners to keep them in the region.

Mario Leupold, Managing Director of WLG Wirtschaftsförderung Lüneburg, recommended that future meet-ups "also give chance a chance". Every organisational framework must leave room for spontaneous dialogue. The premiere at the webnetz headquarters showed that this could continue. Leupold's motto: "If you've had five conversations and taken five names and ideas home with you to expand on, then the Meetup is a success."

For Carsten Wille, the necessity and chances of success of the new start-up format are beyond doubt. He is the head of the start-up service at Leuphana University Lüneburg. His line picks up the thread of the webnetz CEO. "Leuphana is practising and intensifying proactive start-up support. However, we want to launch more in Lüneburg with our partners in the future." In his view, the Faculty of Management and Technology has been "noticeably moving in this direction" since its reestablishment in 2022. According to Wille, around eight professorships are dedicated to the field of entrepreneurial thinking in this faculty alone. Other experts from the Faculty of Sustainability round off the university's expertise.

A summer of start-ups is imminent. The Leuphana Cooperation Service is now organising June as "Entrepreneurship Month 2024". Several events such as the "Startup Port Community Day", the "Holistic Impact Incubator", events on social innovation and entrepreneurship as well as the specialist interim conference on the topic of "From eco to ecopreneur" demonstrate the diversity.