Some days ago Jan C. Rode published a blog post titled “Blockchain rüttelt Hamburgs Wirtschaft auf” (blockchain brisks up Hamburg economy) on After I posted the article on the social networks LinkedIn and Xing with the comment “Hamburg has the potential to become an important location for “real life” blockchain applications” an interesting discussion started in my network. Topic:

Is there any chance for a blockchain startup scene to survive in Hamburg in competition with Berlin?

My vote: a clear “yes”. And this would be good – for Hamburg, for the development of blockchain applications in Germany and for Berlin as well.

Good for Hamburg

The Hamburg startup scene still has some room for improvement and especially the blockchain technology has the potential to bring massive chances to a lot of industries. Hamburg would be winning, if plenty of startups with blockchain competencies in different industries would be formed and collaborate with experts from different branches.

Good for the development of blockchain applications

A critical success factor for emerging technologies is the operationality in the real economy. For blockchain that is the case as well. Hamburg is a stronghold for eCommerce, Media, Renewable Energies, Aviation and – most of all – for the Maritime Economics and for Port Logistics. In all these areas there have been already first developments of very interesting business model approaches deploying blockchain technology at several places on the world. To utilise the groundbreaking developments for the German economy in a successful manner a close collaboration among established branch experts and technology experts out of specialised startup companies is an important factor. In Hamburg there is a good basis for this, i.e. is the newly set up “logistics hub” out of the hub-strategy of the Federal Ministry for Energy and Economics (BMWi) is very well suitable for that kind of approach.

Good for Berlin

Over the last years a fascinating startup scene developed in Berlin. Innovation, creativity and “disruptive power” can be felt almost everywhere. Such centres outside Silicon Valley are important and Germany can be happy to have with Berlin one of the most important startup centres for digital economy. But: the centres of the federal state Germany for the different industries are not located in Berlin, they are spread to different places of the country. There is a need to develop the digital transformation in and with this centres. It is said that the blockchain technology has the potential to change the way we live together and how business and work is organised just like it happened with the rise of the internet over the last years. Therefore it is necessary that the established economy understands the potential of the technology and has a decisive role when it comes to the formation of the future. Berlin can only win, when the digital transformation is done in close and good collaboration with the economic centres of the country.

Hamburg is one of the most important centres of Germany and has in addition very good travel connections to/with Berlin. It is easy and comfortable to commute between the two metropoles und to make use of the benefits of the two cities. In my eyes the major advantage of Hamburg lies in the fact that in the branches, which are located in Hamburg, “real life” blockchain applications are developed. Jan C. Rode listed a couple of promising Hamburg blockchain projects in his article. It can be expected that this is only the beginning of a promising and important development.