Cooperation NYCEDC and Berlin Partner

New York and Berlin will collaborate in a unique way in the future: By signing a cooperation agreement, the two cities will deepen their exchanges so far and begin concrete joint activities in various fields. On Monday, June 18, Ana Ariño, Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer of the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and Stefan Franzke, CEO of Berlin Partner for Business and Technology, signed such an agreement.

With a 12.2 percent share of all Berlin exports, the United States of America is the most important consumer of Berlin goods. New York and Berlin are the leading tech hubs in the US and Germany. Both cities and above all the entrepreneurs in both cities benefited from the good relations between New York City and Berlin. The exchange up to now – for example within the framework of the Start Alliance – spurred on the respective flourishing technology and innovation ecosystems.

Ramona Pop, Senator for Economics, Energy, and Business honors the cooperation between the two cities: “Berlin is an entrepreneur capital and hotspot for startups. One in five Berlin startups comes to the city from outside, which is the highest percentage in the world. We support the founders in expanding their global ambitions, for example, by intensifying their exchange with other startup cities. I am therefore delighted that we are intensifying our close economic cooperation between Berlin and New York by signing this “Memorandum of Understanding.” International contacts can open up markets, initiate transnational cooperation, and facilitate capital flows to Berlin. The Federal Government is called upon to finally realize the long promised broadband expansion with fiber optics in order to expand the digital infrastructure for the requirements of digitization.”

“NYCEDC is thrilled to create economic partnerships with cities like Berlin that have strong talent pools and growing tech ecosystems,” said Ana Ariño, Chief Strategy Officer, New York City Economic Development Corporation. “This partnership will spur further investment between our ecosystems, creating new capacity for business expansions, innovation, and job creation in both cities.”

Dr. Stefan Franzke, CEO of Berlin Partner for Business and Technology: “With the present agreement, the distance between New York and Berlin as it is perceived is a bit shortened. The two cities are moving closer together. I am delighted about the even closer cooperation that we are now agreeing to. I am convinced that at a time when a few loud voices are calling for more self-interest, it is all the more important to approach one another and get closer together.”


The cooperation agreement lists various areas in which the two startup cities agree on an exchange. In particular, these include:

  • Data Alliance
    Wherever possible, New York and Berlin share their data about the economic activities of their respective city or country. Especially with regard to a common Smart City strategy, useful data will be identified, which will then be made available to the partners in both cities. This is expected to include, among others: Labor market and employment figures, venture capital investments, general economic developments, as well as industry and industry data.
  • Economic and growth promotion
    In the future, the cities will want to cooperate even more in business development. These include cooperation on Smart City topics, exchange of economic promotion programs and services of the two agencies, and the partnership in the Start Alliance, which was founded by Berlin Partner.
  • Healthcare innovation cooperation
    The Berlin-Brandenburg region is one of the leading centers of the life sciences and healthcare industry worldwide. The strengths of the region lie in its unique concentration of science, clinic, and business and the close networking. In the future, New York wants to provide information for related US companies in the health-tech sector who are considering expanding into the European or German market or are looking for business or cooperation partners. Here Berlin provides information about ist relevant projects and supports companies in New York in reviewing scientific research and startup excellence.
  • digitalHEALTH initiative
    The two business development agencies want to provide startups with even more support in product development and with market entry in the respective country. Here the projects are intended to be promoted through contacts with investors, medical service providers, insurance companies, accelerators, and the industry. For example, the NYCEDC Digital Health Marketplace program will be open to relevant Berlin startups.
  • Events
    NYCEDC and Berlin partners will work together at events in the future to promote the exchange between Berlin and American companies in Berlin and New York. These include: the Bionnale, the World Health Summit, the conHIT, the Startupnight Berlin, the Tech Open Air, and CUBE Techfair.


There are already good reasons to continue and deepen the cooperation between the two cities of New York and Berlin. To name just three:

  • BigRep
    Stephan Beyer, Chief Financial Officer at BigRep, the Berlin startup for large, commercial 3D printers, impressed his audience at the New Lab in Brooklyn. He had a huge box with BigRep's newest and biggest 3D printer sent from Berlin to New Lab and was about to install it for the first time. BigRep has been working with New Lab and the partnership has helped both sides. “We are the center for design and new manufacturing in New York City. The BigRep team offers impressive new printing opportunities for our members,” said Scott Cohen, co-founder of New Lab. The choice was easy for Stephan Beyer: New Lab is part of the Start Alliance, enabling BigRep to accelerate and lower its cost of expansion into the US. Beyer: “Entering the US market is a challenge for everyone. With the Start Alliance, we were able to focus on our business and not sweat the small stuff.”
  • Citizen’s Mark
    It all started in May 2016, when Cynthia read about the Start Alliance. She was manufacturing in Europe anyway and was immediately interested. She applied and after being accepted, came to Berlin during Fashion Week. She got to know the city and soon opened a location in Europe. “Berlin is an up-and-coming city with a future where there is room for innovation,” says Cynthia Salim, co-founder and CEO of Citizen’s Mark.
  • WestTech Ventures
    WestTech Ventures is a technology-focused early-stage investor based in Berlin, which invests in startups in the pre-seed and seed phase, including the US. The focus is on software, software engineering, mobile services, media, media technology, and EdTech as XaaS solutions in the B2B area. The WestTech portfolio included and includes companies such as Delivery Hero, Iversity, Remerge, and Softgames. Alexander Kölpin, Managing Director at WestTech Ventures, says: “We are really happy to see this dedicated contact point between New York and Berlin. Startups of each city will have more opportunities to scale in the other continent and can grow faster. We are most actively investing in Berlin and the rest of Germany but are looking forward to using this cooperation for more exchange with NY and the USA.”


NYCEDC – Building Strong Neighborhoods, Creating Good Jobs
The New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) is the business development agency of the city of New York. The NYCEDC is dedicated to creating a dynamic, equitable, and sustainable urban economy. New York City’s economic strategy is shaped by five key principles: 1) Investments in infrastructure; 2) Unleashing human capital; 3) Use of city resources; 4) Facilitating the startup and growth of businesses; 5) Cultivating global innovation capital.