Johann Romefort Joins Techstars as Managing Director for the BSH Future Home Accelerator

Techstars is launching a mentorship-driven accelerator in Munich: the BSH Future Home Accelerator Powered by Techstars.

The Future Home: My Vision

Imagine the kitchen as the assembly line of your home: there’s a supply chain of products (your groceries), followed by storage (your fridge and cabinets), processing (appliances, but also your own cooking skills and recipes), down to waste management. As we meet entrepreneurs interested in applying to our accelerator program, we will look at startups covering the whole cycle, from home grown food systems, to delivery services, social recipes platforms, and intelligent appliances.

The vision of the Future Home is one that adapts to who we are and what we need—progressively understanding our preferences, looking out for our safety, and taking care of our well being. Andrew Ng declared, “AI is the new electricity.” AI will soon be everywhere in our homes. Coupled with sensor fusion, AI will redefine our habitat experience.

“How Can I Help?”

Today, I’m happy to announce that I’m joining Techstars as Managing Director for the BSH Future Home Accelerator. Techstars’ values align with mine—the #GiveFirst mindset, the importance of mentorship, and the access to a valuable network—and I‘m super excited to get to work.

Not only do I love to provide my insights on product-market fit, technology stack, and scaling—but I also like to share some of the values that were key in building my career. The first question I ask people I meet is: “How can I help?” (#GiveFirst)

So what’s next? As Managing Director for the BSH Future Home Accelerator Powered by Techstars, my mission along with BSH is to find 10 great startups we can accelerate in the coming year. BSH Home Appliances is one of the largest manufacturers of home appliances in the world, and the leader in Europe with global brands like Bosch,Siemens and Gaggenau, as well as local heroes such as Thermador in the U.S.

The 10 companies selected to join the program will have direct feedback and mentorship from a group at the top of its field. Our vision is simple, yet bold: we want to invent the home of the future and create brand new experiences.

The Munich Ecosystem

Building communities is at the heart of what I’ve been doing for the last 10 years. I love to see the magic happen when collisions occur.

As a tech evangelist for the past three years, my mission is to shake up the local ecosystem. Munich has incredible resources, including a vast pool of talent, due to renowned universities and large corporations that fuel the innovation landscape.

Now with Techstars in town, Munich is on the innovation map, and as a managing director my mission will be to accelerate the collisions.

Techstars, with its over 10,000 mentors, investors,and alumni, is a great addition to the Munich startup ecosystem. It will provide the know-how necessary to raise the bar for the whole local startup landscape.

After co-founding Seesmic in 2007, I quickly realised that access to quality mentorship is key for a first time founder. Mentors help you fast-track things and avoid the could-be-deadly mistakes, especially at an early stage of the company. With a firm belief in the power of giving back, I’ve started to get more involved with Munich’s startup hubs to provide mentorship. I’m thrilled that I’ll be able to extend this effort with the power of the Techstars network and by following and helping founders closely, during and after the accelerator program.

Next Steps

My next steps? I’ll be traveling around Europe, Israel, and China in September/October 2018 to meet founders. Add me on LinkedIn and Twitter to stay up to date with news about the program and even meet me in person for office hours or during the Techstars Meet & Greet in one of the following cities: Stockholm, Paris and Berlin (more to be announced). Stay tuned for an upcoming AMA to learn about the program, the startups we are looking for, and some more information about how to apply to the Techstars program.

The applications for the BSH Future Home Accelerator Powered by Techstars are now open and will close on October 14th. Wondering about best practices on how to apply? Check out our application toolkit and apply today.

Techstars Continues European Expansion with New Mentorship-driven Accelerator Program in Munich

Techstars, the worldwide network that helps entrepreneurs succeed, today announced a new partnership with BSH, one of the leading home appliance manufacturers worldwide, to bring a new mentorship-driven accelerator program to Munich, Germany: BSH Future Home Accelerator Powered by Techstars. Techstars has a long history in Germany, dating back to our first Techstars Startup Weekend in 2010. This is the fifth Techstars Mentorship-driven Accelerator program in Germany, following successful accelerator programs in Berlin.

The Techstars team with Tibor Kramer, Venture and Accelerator Partner at BSH Home Appliances Corporation

BSH and Techstars are looking for innovative startup companies from around the globe that will bring pioneering technologies to change the way digital consumers live, cook and do housework, especially in the heart of the future home  – the connected kitchen. The companies will be supported throughout the Techstars Mentorship-driven Accelerator program with educational content and by a team of mentors who bring subject-matter expertise, business connections and access to resources.

BSH is one of the world’s most successful home appliance manufacturers, with global brands like Bosch, Siemens, Gaggenau, and Neff and have established industry leading standards through BSH Home Connect technology. The selected companies will benefit from BSH experience and knowledge, as well as an installed base of more than a million connected home appliances.

Applications for the accelerator open on July 23rd 2018 and the program kicks off in Munich, Germany in February 2019. Startups interested in applying should review the Application Toolkit.