Thinking about the future, shaping the future: start-up conferences in Bavaria

Starting up is one thing. Finding ideas, investors and inspiration is something else. There are start-up events and conferences for the latter. This is where the who's who of the start-up scene meets to shape the future together. You can find everything in Bavaria, from small meetings to big tech conferences. The range on offer in Bavaria is as broad as the market’s needs and opportunities itself: cross-sector, promotional, creating synergies. It is not without reason that not only local start-ups, but also countless international guests, innovators and investors are drawn to Bavaria to attend events.

While major events such as Bits & Pretzels appeal to a broad audience, specialist conferences such as DIA usually focus on a specific industry or topic. There are also special networking events to bring young entrepreneurs together with investors or industry. Let's take a look at the start-up events in Bavaria.

Major events: lighthouse projects for digitisation and innovation in Bavaria

Bits & Pretzels: The Bits & Pretzels start-up festival, which takes place every year at Oktoberfest time, is without question extremely well known. More than 5,000 decision-makers and creative minds from various industries come together here to discuss new technological developments and provide impetus for the future.

Startup Safari: Startup Safari invites you to explore the start-up ecosystem in various cities, including Munich. The event takes place locally with start-ups opening their doors and giving potential partners and investors a glimpse behind the scenes.

The Royal Jungle: The Royal Jungle is a format with international appeal that sets standards across industries. This is a conference with a rave feel. It combines business and partying in the heart of Munich – with international speakers and 1,000 selected participants.

BayStartup Demo Nights: Another noteworthy event are the BayStartup Demo Nights, which take place annually in Munich and Nuremberg and offer Bavarian start-ups from all industries from high-tech to bio sciences, IoT to mobility, lifestyle, health or sport a stage for their solutions and products. You can casually get to know each other here.

Start-ups meet corporates & investors: the direct line to industry and financial backers

FitTech Summit by Burda Bootcamp: The industry event for fitness & technology by Burda. International speakers discover start-up innovations from fitness, health and nutrition in Europe for the first time to celebrate the FitTech trends of tomorrow.

Venturecon Bavaria: If you are looking for investment opportunities, Venturecon Bavaria in Munich could open valuable doors for you. The focus here is on matchmaking investors and future start-ups – the target groups are tech and digital start-ups.

Plug & Play Insurtech Expo Day: Meet-ups and smaller expos such as Plug & Play's Insurtech Expo Day in Munich are more intimate but no less purposeful. Companies and start-ups are actively matched with each other to then refine joint solutions for the InsurTech industry as part of a programme.

International Entrepreneurs’ Night: International Entrepreneurs' Night is UnternehmerTUM’s networking event in Munich. The thematic focus is on Smart Cities. Start-ups, industry and investors meet here twice a year to discuss the city of the future and to establish contacts for collaboration.

Techfest: Techfest is also organised by TU Munich. It is broadly positioned in terms of themes but the rush of visitors is still small and exclusive. Techfest offers the ideal platform for investors to lay the foundations for future collaboration with start-ups particularly with the Launchpad Day at Lake Wörth.

Digital Tech Summit: The same applies to the Digital Tech Summit in Nuremberg in Central Franconia, which specialises in matchmaking with industry: hackathons and challenges involving local companies such as Schaeffler, Adidas and Siemens Healthineers allow talented people from the start-up scene to prove themselves and, ideally, come into direct contact with potential clients or sponsors.

Cashwalk: The annual event in Munich brings together selected start-ups and top-class investors. The event is organised exclusively by the elite university LMU’s Entrepreneurship Center. Participation for the start-ups selected by a jury is free of charge.

Year of the X: This Munich event is to be seen less as a pure start-up festival than as a broad-based innovation and tech festival. The future of the digital industry is discussed with a large number of international speakers, influencers, workshops and a varied accompanying programme.

Trade fairs: Bavaria’s showrooms for visionary ideas

Productronica and  Elektronica: Founders go one step further at the Productronica and Elektronica trade fairs in Munich. As direct access to SMEs offers excellent opportunities to find customers right away. Both trade fairs also have a so-called FastForward programme for start-ups: at a joint stand reserved for this purpose, young companies can present their ideas, demonstrate them in workshops and pitches or establish contacts. At the end of the event, a jury awards a FastForward Award to those start-ups that have presented themselves most promisingly in the various categories – a real opportunity to receive funding and gain recognition (FastForward programme:  Productronica / Electronica).

Messe Nürnberg: Messe Nürnberg also offers similar programmes for start-ups at various trade fairs. These include specialised events for embedded systems, sustainable energy or cyber security, which bring international experts from various disciplines together with start-ups..

The range on offer is broad and sometimes geared towards matchmaking, sometimes towards pitches and sometimes towards innovations and cooperation across industries. The conference and trade fair landscape therefore makes Bavaria an even more attractive location for start-ups. After all, networking is extremely easy here.

We cannot guarantee that this list of start-up events in Bavaria is complete. If you would like to suggest other conferences, please send us an  E-Mail.