Who or what is ekipa?

We are ekipa, a startup from Frankfurt am Main and we combine digital natives with exciting companies. ekipa is an open innovation platform on which the ekipa crowd, i.e. young, clever, creative minds in interdisciplinary teams, jointly develop innovations. They create new ideas, solutions and approaches for the problems and challenges of large companies.

Kann ich ein Teil von ekipa werden?

Klar, denn genau darum geht es ja! ekipa ist eine sogenannte “Open Innovation-Plattform”. Dies bedeutet, dass Innovationsprozesse von Unternehmen und Organisationen über unserer Plattform geöffnet werden. Somit funktioniert unsere Geschäftsidee nur dann, wenn ihr auf unserer Plattform in Teams Lösungen für die Challenges entwickelt. Und genau deshalb steht auch ihr im Vordergrund der Plattform. Zudem ist unser Team immer offen für neue Gesichter, wenn du Interesse hast bei uns zu arbeiten schau einfach mal auf unserer Jobseite vorbei: www.indeed.com/ekipa

What do you get from ekipa?

On our platform you can transfer your knowledge into practice, work with exciting brands and organisations on their problems and challenges, develop yourself personally by working in interdisciplinary teams, come into contact with people who think the same way and also think differently with new perspectives, build up a reputation that is not based on grades and thus also earn money and premiums. And all this is 100% free of charge for you.

Welche Innovationsformate gibt es auf der Plattform?

On our platform you will find challenges on very different topics. From the digitalisation of analogue industries or products, the development of new business models to the development of strategies, concepts or prototypes, everything is included. However, all our challenges have one thing in common: they are always about future topics that nobody else can solve as well as you can: young, ambitious people with great ideas.

Who is the ekipa-crowd?

You’re the crowd! Young people with great new ideas, who want to apply their knowledge in reality, to work in interdisciplinary teams, to achieve added value and earn money at the same time. In the meantime, over 7,000 users have come together on our platform, including students, graduates and young founders. Become a part of the crowd and register now.

What is crowd teaming?

Crowd teaming is the approach we have developed for our platform. We do two things together: The broad and diverse knowledge of the crowd, which is put together in interdisciplinary teams (teaming) to jointly develop solutions for a challenge.

What is the advantage of crowd teaming?

We believe that today’s economic or social problems and challenges require knowledge and strengths from different fields in order to be solved. This is exactly what crowd teaming enables. We bring different people together to solve exactly such problems and challenges and thus make the world a little bit better.

How much time do I have to plan for?

That depends very much on the challenge. However, we deliberately chose a two-step process in order to be able to control the time required. In the qualification phase, we attach great importance to keeping the effort for the teams low: Innovative idea sketches are the key word. However, if your team qualifies for the elaboration phase and thus has a high chance of winning prizes and rewards, you will have to reckon with more effort. After all, the client expects elaborate and well thought-out solutions for the prize money.

According to which criteria are winners (qualifying and final) chosen?

Each Challenge has its own criteria and solution guidelines for selecting the winners of each phase. If you would like to have a better chance of winning a challenge, you should try to orient yourself towards the respective criteria and guidelines for developing solutions. You will always find these guidelines in the Challenge Briefing.

How many teams win a prize?

That always depends on the respective challenge. But what we value: Not only the best team should be rewarded, but also other teams that have made it into the development phase. After all, you put a lot of work into developing the solution and you shouldn’t be frustrated in the end because you only finished second.

Do you receive a confirmation of participation?

Everyone who takes part in a challenge and submits an idea will receive different participation confirmations and certificates depending on the progress. After all, in addition to your experience, contact with companies, transfer of experience and possible prize money, you should also receive some black and white certificates.

Legal / Financial

Who has the rights to the innovations?

Das ist von Innovationsformat zu Innovationsformat unterschiedlich. Die Rechte können nach der letzten Auswahl an das Unternehmen abgegeben werden, man einigt sich auf eine faire Aufteilung oder die rechte bleiben beim Team (Startup) aber es wird im Vorhinein ein Kooperationsvertrag unterschrieben.

How is the prize money taxed?

If you win, you will receive the prize money within 30 days from us by bank transfer to your account. As a winner, you are responsible for paying tax on your prize money. However, this is really not witchcraft. The best way to do this is to contact your local tax office (see https://ias.fin-nrw.de/ddvs/auskunft.faces) and ask what you need to do.

What do I have to consider when transferring the prize money?

If you are one of the winners of a Challenge, we will inform you at the email address you provided when the Challenge was completed. The transfer of the prize money or the handing over of the rewards will take place within 30 days after the announcement of the winning teams or 30 days after we have received all necessary payment information from you.

How does ekipa make money?

ekipa verdient nicht direkt an deinen Lösungen. Schließlich werden die Lösungen nicht von ekipa entwickelt, sondern von dir und deinem Team. Aber: Natürlich müssen auch wir von irgendetwas leben. Das Geschäftsmodell von ekipa ist ganz leicht: Das auftraggebende Unternehmen zahlt – neben den Preisgeldern für die besten Teams – einen Betrag für die Zurverfügungstellung der Plattform, die Aufbereitung des Innovationsformates und das Marketing auf Seiten der Crowd. Damit am Ende auch alle den größtmöglichen Mehrwert mitnehmen können.

Onboarding - your start at ekipa

How do I register? Which data can or must I enter?

The registration takes place first via the button “Register” on the start page. Then you have to enter your name, your e-mail address and a password with at least 6 characters. You are already registered. But before you can take part in a challenge, you have to complete your Innovator profile. If your university is available in our database, you should enter it as well as your department. Then you will receive the most important information: Your skills. These serve to find suitable teams for you and to show other potential team members and teams what you can contribute to a great solution. So think carefully about what skills you indicate and how you describe them. You also have the option of linking your LinkedIn profile and entering your phone number.

How do teams assemble?

The teams are put together in two different ways. Either you can create a team yourself, for example if you already have a solution idea or you already know which fellow students you would like to join a team with. Or you can join an already existing team. All existing teams will be displayed for this purpose. You can also see which skills each team member has and which skills they still need in their team. This provides you with a perfect basis for deciding with which team you want to take part in the challenge.

Can you line up on your own?

Basically, you can also participate as a single fighter in every challenge. However, we would rather recommend that you find a team or found one yourself, so that you can combine your knowledge and skills to develop an even better solution in the end! If you need help with the team search, please contact us by email at hello@ekipa.de or via the chat on the platform.

Can I register as a team directly?

Currently this is not (yet) possible. However, this is a function that is planned for the future, especially for teams that have already proven themselves in the constellation in other challenges and then want to work together again directly

How can I start a team myself?

If you want to create a team yourself, for example because you already have a great idea for a solution or already know which innovators you want to join a team with, you can click on the button “Participate” in a challenge and then on the left on the button “Create team”. There you enter a team name, an optional description of your team and project as well as skills that are still needed in the team. Now your team is already created and other innovators on the platform can join your team.

How can I join a team?

In a challenge, under the tab “Teams”, you get an overview of all existing teams including the skills of the team members and a description of the project. Now you can submit a request to join a team you want to join. Optionally you can send a message to the team. As soon as one of the team members accepts you, you will be notified and will be part of the team immediately. The teams can decide about your admission on the basis of your profile and your message.

Who's leading the teams?

Although a team is always created by one person, no team has a “team leader”. Each team member has the same rights, for example, in confirming new team members or submitting solutions that each member must agree to.

Can I remove a member from the team?

No. However, you have the option of reporting individual team members to us at hello@ekipa.de if, for example, they do not participate adequately in the development of the solution. We then check each report individually and try to find a solution together with the team.

Is it possible to compete with several teams?

You can only compete with one team per challenge. So think carefully about which team and which team members you choose to have the best possible chance of winning each challenge.


Why is ekipa the right partner?

Ekipa offers access to the young, digital generation. In addition to the 7,000 users on the platform, we have built up a network of over 65 universities in six European countries through which we generate topic-specific participants. In addition, we promise to at least fulfill the wishes and specifications. By bringing our participants together with the experts from the company, we can guarantee satisfactory solutions.

Wie finde ich ein Thema für ein Innovationsformat?

Wir sind nicht nur Vermarkter, generieren die richtigen Teilnehmer und veranstalten die begleitenden Events, wir beraten die Unternehmen auch in ihrem strategischen Vorgehen und erarbeiten gemeinsam die Herausforderung. In einem (digitalen) Workshop definieren wir gemeinsam ein passendes Thema und stecken gleichzeitig alle Rahmenbedingungen ab. Daraus entwickeln wir unter anderem das Challenge-Briefing und den weiteren Zeitplan der Challenge.

Wie laufen Innovationsprojekte ab?

In the qualification phase, initial ideas and solutions are submitted. Here it is decided which teams are suitable and which ideas can be developed further. This is followed by the elaboration phase, in joint workshops we bring experts from the company together with the participants and develop the ideas into a finished prototype. Finally, we organize a pitch event at which the teams present their solutions and the winner is announced.

Who makes the decision?

The decision always lies with the Challenge client. We only connect the two parties and ensure a smooth process.

Was habe ich als Unternehmen von solchen Innovationsformaten?

Accelerate innovation, open perspectives, maintain competitive advantage, become a pioneer, increase profits. The fresh ideas and solutions of clever, creative digital natives, i.e. students, graduates and young people, bring with them a number of advantages.

Who has the rights to the innovations?

That varies from Challenge to Challenge. The rights can be transferred to the company after the last selection, a fair distribution is agreed or the rights remain with the team (startup) but a cooperation agreement is signed in advance.

Wie starte ich ein Innovationsformat?

First things first, first of all we should exchange ideas and talk personally, simply fill out the contact form, write an email or call directly.

Universities and Professors

Kann ich ein Innovationsformat einbinden?

Of course, we have done this many times in the past and are always positively surprised at how enthusiastically students develop solutions in their own modules. The additional motivation for credit points has proven to be very effective. But not only the students benefit from such a challenge, the lecturer also receives a lot of positive feedback.

How can I integrate a challenge?

Bei einem thematisch passenden Format, lässt sich die Challenge ganz einfach in ein Modul während dem Semester implementieren.

How do I prepare my students for a challenge?

Wir veranstalten sehr gerne einen Einführungsworkshop vor Ort oder digital an eurer Hochschule. Hier stellen wir die Challenge vor und leiten in das Thema ein. Natürlich stellen wir unsere Inhalte auch zur Verfügung und stehen bei Fragen immer zur Stelle.

ekipa Alumni Club

Was ist der ekipa Alumni Club?

Der ekipa Alumni Club ist ein exklusiver Teilbereich der gesamten ekipa Community. Der Club ist für Innovatoren vorbehalten, die in früheren Formaten besonders herausgestochen sind, oder sich aufgrund ihrer außergewöhnlichen Fähigkeiten & Profile qualifiziert haben. ​

Was macht der ekipa Alumni Club?

Im Alumni Club stehen Networking Möglichkeiten, der Austausch mit anderen Innovatoren sowie die Teilnahme an exklusiven Formaten in Form von Challenges oder Community Events im Vordergrund.

Warum sollte ich Mitglied des ekipa Alumni Clubs werden?

Die Events des Alumni Clubs bieten die Möglichkeit zur Vernetzung mit exklusiven Partnern, Möglichkeiten zur gemeinsamen Umsetzung und Preisgeldern. Dabei kannst du aus erster Hand Kontakte zu namhaften Unternehmen und Organisationen knüpfen, um mit ihnen zusammen Innovationen voranzutreiben. Darüber hinaus hast du in Rahmen des Alumni Clubs die Möglichkeit an exklusiven Formaten, wie Innovation Days, Recruiting Formate, Networking-Events mit interessanten Experten und die Möglichkeit zur Vernetzung und Austausch mit anderen Innovatoren. ​

Wie werde ich Teil des ekipa Alumni Clubs?

Hast du bereits an einem unserer Formate teilgenommen und hast Interesse am Alumni Club, dann spreche uns einfach an und wir können uns in einem kurzen Telefonat über deine Teilnahme austauschen.

Du denkst deine außergewöhnlichen Fähigkeiten und dein Profil qualifizieren dich für eine Mitgliedschaft im ekipa Alumni Club, dann sende uns dein ausgefülltes Application Template an alumniclub@ekipa.de.

Hier findest du das Application Template: Alumni Club Application Template