Under Pressure To Perform, Deutsche Telekom Revamps T-Venture Strategy

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The Inbox Is The New Activity Stream. Kind Of…

Hot on the heels of news that Telefonica is ramping up its activity with a new fund for Latin America and an acceleration of its incubator network, comes the news that Deutsche Telekom is getting frustrated that its T-Venture arm isn’t performing as well as it might.

Bloomberg reports that owners Deutsche Telekom plan to revamp venture investment activities in order to allow T-Venture to acquire majority stakes in startups, adjusting how it works to “enable quicker decisions on attractive targets”.

T-Venture has a total budget of about €450 million ($566 million) for investments, with investments in roughly 80 companies. However, Deutsche Telekom managers are reportedly not satisfied with the progress so far and plan to step it up.

About €100 million of T-Venture’s current budget has been invested, while €240 million has been set aside for minority investments and early-stage startups, and €100 million can be spent on majority stakes and follow-up funding for existing investments, according to a spokesman Bloomberg quotes.

However, perhaps they just need to co-ordinate their efforts better?

Deutsche Telekom owns mobile network T-Mobile which now has its own incubator brand in Berlin
- hubraum – in a move which somewhat apes Telefonica’s Wayra network. Hubraum plans to put in up to €300,000 per startup and take in 10 to 15 companies every year. But it only has one outlet in Berlin so far. That’s not a lot of startups.

Meanwhile, T-Venture has been investing in bigger tech firms like Mobilisafe, Roamware, an Ubiquisys, as well as consumer startups like MyTaxi and Airbnb clone 9flats.