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Startup advice with Christina Brandmair

The Startup Club is trilled to feature Christina Brandmair, who manages Plug and Play's global pilot-driven digital health program Startup Creasphere. She has expanded the platform from Munich to Singapore and Silicon Valley and oversees the global program locations. In her daily activities, she's supporting corporations like Roche Diagnostics and Daiichi Sankyo in their innovation journey and their efforts to collaborate with startups, and she's working closely with the startups.

Could you tell us more about yourself

I'm passionate about open innovation and startups, and I believe that if you set your mind to something and you surround yourself with the right people, anything is possible. I'mactually a very analytical person coming from consulting, with a background in finance and innovation. In the entrepreneurship ecosystem I learned about the value of having a great network, learning from each other, creating things together, and especially inspiring each other.

What is the most interesting aspect of your job?

At Startup Creasphere, I'm connecting corporations and startups to explore collaborations. That means, I'm supporting disruptive founders from all across the globe giving them access to our ecosystem. On the other hand, I'm an expert in corporate innovation and I'm guiding our corporate partners in their innovation journey. For me, being in touch with such diverse and great minds and bringing them closer together to create real outcomes makes all the difference.

How does Startup Creasphere differentiate from other programs or accelerators?

We are proud to say that over the past 5 years, Startup Creasphere evolved into one the largest digital health innovation programs worldwide. The program has a clear focus on co-creation between corporates and startups to transform healthcare together. As a startup, you cannot apply to the program - we receive focus topics from our corporate partners and in an iterative scouting process, we find the perfect startup for the project challenge. With this approach, we are looking back at 15 batches in Munich, Singapore and Silicon Valley, and corporations like Roche, Sanofi, Lonza, Novo Nordisk and BIOTRONIK have been running pilot projects with 107 startups from 14 countries in very diverse focus areas. This year, we're celebrating our 5 year anniversary and we've just started new pilots with Roche, Daiichi Sankyo and NEOM.

Which industry do you find more successful to operate in based on the current landscape?

The current landscape is definitely challenging especially for founders. I am convinced that startups addressing the major challenges of our society will be successful, and we need these disruptive minds more than ever to achieve real impact and to drive innovation. Sustainability and climate tech are great examples here - there is a clear need to tackle environmental challenges, but corporations also need to implement innovative and sustainable processes to remain competitive, to save costs and to still stay relevant for their customer groups. At Plug and Play, we've just seen our portfolio company Einride become a unicorn - they are rethinking road transport from scratch and provide autonomous, all-electric vehicles, enabling clients to reduce transportation costs along with creating a cleaner environment. In the healthcare industry, I'm seeing disruptive solutions that could really make a difference for patients, that focus on prevention rather than care, and that could transform healthcare systems across the globe.

Connect with Christina on LinkedIn.

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