EP #31 – From Failure To Success: A Chat With Frank Thelen

We'd like to get your constructive feedback on this episode. What did you find insightful? What did you not like? What can we do better?



1:54  – Going bankrupt as a young adult

12:18 – Key values for founders

15:39 – When to drop a business venture

17:23 – VC funding or bootstrapping?

18:55 – Europe’s role in the global startup scene

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Frank Thelen is the Co-Founder and CEO of Freigeist Capital (formerly e42). He is however best known for his role on “Höhle der Löwen”, a German reality TV program where founders pitch to senior venture capitalists for fundraising. Since the early 90’s, he has founded more than 10 companies, most with a strong focus on innovative technology. One of his first ventures, Twisd AG, had to file for bankrupcy in the wake of the bursting “dotcom“ bubble. Based on this experience, he published his autobiography “Startup-DNA – Hinfallen, aufstehen, die Welt verändern” which became a bestseller in Germany. Frank has also had an active role in German politics as one of the leading members of the German Innovation Council.


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