I’m hanging out in Berlin for a couple of weeks right now. There is a great art, music & post modern counter-culture vibe here that seems to be exciting young people all over Europe (& the world). The Euro tech startup scene is taking off as Berlin passes London (while it burns) as the place for young talent looking to shake the tech status quo on a shoestring budget.
US power VCs like Fred Wilson are intrigued by the city & relationships are being formed that will continue to fuel Berlin’s success going forward. Hey, there are even english language tech blogs covering the scene (check out Silicon Allee)
With Berlin’s left leaning populace & strong Green party (routinely winning 25-30% of the vote) you would also expect to see a lot of cleantech & social business co-mingling within all the new tech goodness. It does look like Berlin is pushing hard to win in cleantech by building a new center east of the city.
If you are in Berlin, stop by the Betahaus–a fun coworking space full of location free co-founders, designers & free thinkers on the east side of town (oh, stop by Sankt Oberholz too). In line with what you would expect in Berlin, folks at the Betahaus told me people in Berlin don’t really focus on trying to make money. As long as they can survive; they are good. So best not to bring a “pretentious air” when you come here I guess…
Other cities in Germany are scrambling to match what Berlin is driving behind the tech scene, but Berlin is pushing ahead, building a 21st century city behind a thriving creative class.