Körber Start-up Challenge on Manufacturing Efficiency 2022 (postponed to 2023)

The Körber Start-up Challenge connects top notch start-ups and manufacturing companies to increase manufacturing efficiency and sustainability together. The goal is to find innovative solutions for existing challenges within the manufacturing processes.  

Unfortunatey, this year we can't host the Start-up Challenge due to unforeseeable reasons. For questions, please turn to annika.fricker@koerber.com.
Next year the Challenge will be back - we hope to see you all in 2023!

Let’s transform the manufacturing industry together!

postponed to 2023

For manufacturers and OEMs: Join our 2022 challenge by sharing your manufacturing efficiency project(s) and challenge(s) where you need a solution for and/ or choose one of our pre-defined search fields. Application is possible until 08 July 2022. Find out more about your benefits as an industry partner.

For start-ups: Check out the challenges from our industry partners and pick one out that you can solve with your solution. Challenges will be published on 11 July 2022 on this website. Application will be possible until 01 August 2022. Learn about the application procedure and your benefits as a participant.

Short Facts

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Postponed to 2023.

Bits&Pretzels is Europe's leading start-up festival, which takes place for the 7th time in Munich at the time of the Oktoberfest. In addition to first-class speakers, top-notch start-ups, numerous industrial companies and investors can be found there. Bits&Pretzels is a three-day event full of learning, networking & inspiration. You can find more information here.  

For manufacturers and OEMs - join our 2022 challenge!

Your benefits as industry partner

# Connect with top-notch start-ups and collaborate on identifying new ways of solving your manufacturing efficiency challenges

# Get discounted access to Europe's leading founders festival, the Bits&Pretzels in Munich for networking & inspiration and be part of our exclusive pitch event hosted by Körber Digital at the festival

# Meet like-minded manufacturers and OEMs to exchange thoughts and ideas

# Position yourself as innovation leader

Your committment

  1. Share your manufacturing efficiency projects and real-life challenges where you need a solution for or join one of our search fields (see down below).
  2. Define at least one dedicated mentor to take part at the Körber Start-up Challenge on-site at Bits&Pretzels to support the start-ups and be part of the jury at our pitch event.
  3. Choose one start-up who applied for your project that you think will solve your challenge the best. Three more startups get chosen in a joint decision.
  4. One-time investment of 8.000 €, to support winning team (3.000€), get two tickets for yourself (3.700€) and invite start-ups to Bits&Pretzels (1.300€).


Your options

Submit your manufacturing efficiency project(s) and challenge(s) where you need a solution for and/ or choose one of the search fields below.

Submit your challenges/ search field now.

lWithout the start-up challenge we would not be that far yet. It helped us to learn what solutions exist and find collaboration partners to work with further. r

Frederik Thiele, Dividella – Körber

Apply with your manufacturing efficiency challenges for 2022!

Manufacturer and OEM: FAQ

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Any OEM or manufacturer that has a challenge to solve and is interested in working with start-ups can participate. If you don’t have a concrete challenge, you can also vote for search field you are interested in. Size, industry and location do not matter.

As a participating company, you commit to define at least one mentor of your company to take part at our event at the Bits&Pretzels. Furthermore, you commit to pay 8.000€ fee. More information can be found in the FAQ about the fee.

The participation fee is 8.000€. It consists of 3.000€ for the investment pool (price money for the winning start-ups), 3.600€ for two discounted tickets for yourself for the Bits&Pretzels and 1.300€ to invite start-ups to the Bits&Pretzels. 

In addition, you will have to pay for your own transportation to the venue and (if necessary) for your accommodation in Munich, as well. Be aware, that the Oktoberfest will take place during the same time frame which is why hotels should be booked well in advance.

Postponed to 2023.

You can submit your challenges until the 08 July 2022 directly here.  

Our exclusive pitch event will be on Monday, 26 September 2022 at around noon and is the only event that requires your presence obligatorily.

Since you have access to the Bits&Pretzels festival during its whole length, it is up to you whether you prefer to arrive shortly before and leave right after our event or decide to stay longer and enjoy all the possibilities Bits&Pretzels offers.

You can submit as many challenges as you want in the first step and wait to see how many start-ups will apply to each one. The participation fee includes only the invitation for one start-up (meaning the solution to one challenge).

If you would like to invite more start-ups, you are welcome to do so, but you need to pay 800€ per startup for their tickets to Bits&Pretzels.

After the start-up application process, you can select your favorite one and invite it to participate. In addition, you can vote for more start-ups, from which the winners will be invited as well. 

If you would like to invite more start-ups, you are welcome to do so, but you need to pay 800€ per startup for their tickets to Bits&Pretzels.

Hey, start-ups! Are you up for a challenge?

Your benefits as a start-up

# Increase the speed of your B2B business development and find your next customer/ collaboration partner

# Professionalize your product with additional use cases and get feedback from different decision-makers and across various industries

# Gain domain expertise and industry insights

# Get free access to Europe’s leading founder festival, the Bits & Pretzels in Munich for networking & inspiration (travel costs and accommodation are not included)

# Benchmark and exchange with other start-up technologies

# Take home a win and the prize money

Your committment

  1. Check out the challenges from our industry partners and apply until 01 August 2022 for those you can solve with your innovative solution.
  2. After being selected as participant, finetune your solution to the exact real-life challenge in collaboration with your industry partner.
  3. Define max. two participants to join Bits & Pretzels in Munich and to pitch your solution in front of a qualified jury at our exclusive event at the festival site.
  4. Let your tech shine and collect the prize money and a potential new customer.

lVery good format to tackle real life challenges in collaboration with real customers.r

Dr. Theo Steininger, Erium – Start-up from 2020

Challenges will be published on 11 July 2022.

Start-up: FAQ

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Any start-up with a product that can solve one of the challenges listed above or has a solution to one of our search fields can participate.

As a participating start-up, you commit to actively participate in the Start-up Challenge. This means at least one of you will participate at the event on the 26 September in Munich at the Bits&Pretzels. The event is free of charge for you, but you have to cover your travel costs on your own.

Postponed to 2023.

You can start to apply on 11 July, when we published the challenges on this page until 01 August. You are welcome to register here in advance so that you will receive a notification as soon as you can apply.

First place receives 60% of the investment pool of all partners, second place 30% and third place 10%. At the event you will pitch your solution and a jury consisting of industry partners will evaluate your pitch. Based on this evaluation, the winner will be announced.

You remain the owner of your contributions.    

Ideally, a partnership with you and an industry partner could start after the challenge. You and your industry partner will discuss the new contractual conditions without Körber’s involvement. 

Before the Start-up Challenge we will connect you with your industry partner, so you can discuss the challenge more in detail. You have also the chance to ask for more information or documents needed.

Do you have additional questions?

Annika Fricker - Junior Venture Architect

Annika Fricker
Körber Digital GmbH
Junior Venture Architect


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