Innovator and entrepreneur Rolf Herken devises unique, vertically integrated corporate ecosystem for the creation of technology companies
New efficient funding model for start-ups benefits both innovators and investors
BERLIN, GERMANY and SAN FRANCISCO, CA – November 19, 2013 –The innovator and entrepreneur Rolf Herken today announced the founding of MINE Innovation Engineering GmbH (MINE) and Reality Ventures Beteiligungs GmbH (Reality Ventures).
Headquartered in Berlin with main research and development centers in San Francisco and Berlin, MINE and Reality Ventures, operating in tandem, provide a unique, vertically integrated corporate ecosystem for the creation of technology companies to design, build and develop platforms and solutions that operate on a massive scale to benefit millions of people. It offers strategic and financial investors cost-effective, lower risk technology innovation.
“There is significant untapped potential for innovation among engineers and scientists around the world. As a two-time creator of companies, I am determined to help develop an environment that will encourage the world’s best engineers and scientists to solve some of society’s biggest technological challenges and significantly benefit from the results,” said Rolf Herken, Founder, CEO & CTO of MINE. “With our tandem structure in place, these scientists and engineers will be freed up to put their talent to work on innovative solutions without distraction. I am confident that in return for funding our unique, vertically integrated ecosystem, significant strategic advantages and exceptionally large returns will be generated for our strategic and financial investors.”
MINE’s current core team of ten seasoned executives and engineers includes Peter Mehlstaeubler, COO and Managing Director of MINE, Berlin, Larry Tesler, Chief Experience Officer of MINE, and Gary Yost, VP Engineering Management of MINE, San Francisco. In addition, MINE will hire more than twenty scientists and engineers within the next six months.
MINE innovation engineering projects are initially focused on the development of fundamental scalable platform solutions for cloud computing and on related cloud-based consumer and professional applications. Innovation engineering projects may also be focused on application-specific processor logic design, neural computing, robotics, energy, and life sciences and medical technologies.
“I joined MINE because of the opportunity to guide topnotch engineers as they create world class user experiences for breakthrough products,” said MINE Chief Experience Officer Larry Tesler, a widely respected computer industry pioneer with technology and management experience in both research and commercial product development. “I’m excited to help lead MINE, a place where engineers can be creative with minimal distractions.”
Herken also announced today Reality Ventures’ founding partner and first strategic investor, Paris-based Dassault Systèmes, the 3DEXPERIENCE Company. Dassault Systèmes, recently listed by Forbes as the third most innovative software company in the world, provides customers worldwide with collaborative industry solution experiences that foster social innovation and expand possibilities for the virtual world to improve the real world. The initial investment of Reality Ventures in MINE funds the targeted creation of several large-scale, confidential proof-of-concept prototypes. Once validated internally, these projects will be turned into valuable start-up businesses funded by Reality Ventures.
“We are very pleased to be working with Rolf Herken on the implementation of Reality Ventures and MINE. Dassault Systèmes has a significant reputation as an innovator which pioneers entirely new domains within the technology industry,” said Pascal Daloz, Dassault Systèmes' EVP, Corporate Strategy & Market Development. “Our knowledge and insight into innovation and engineering for a vast range of industries and customers will be a critical help in MINE's process of reviewing and validating potential projects.”
How it works
Reality Ventures funds MINE, which in turn provides intellectual, corporate, financial and legal support for the engineering project teams. To maximize success rates, MINE and Reality Ventures have devised a novel five-stage IP Mining™ process: Innovation, Ingeneering™, Incubating, Investing and Implementing. Ingeneering™ is the targeted creation of proof-of-concept and prototype technologies by MINE’s ingenious engineering talent. It is the key stage of the IP Mining™ process. Once each proof-of-concept technology is validated, typically within 18 to 24 months, a start-up company is formed with the option for the engineers to join and co-own their start-up company at low personal risk.
Benefit to Innovators and Engineers
MINE provides a singular opportunity for brilliant innovators and highly talented, experienced engineers to develop and pursue a product idea that excites them in a largely pressure-free environment, with competitive pay and benefits plus the guarantee that they will co-own a significant equity interest in their start-up. Once their idea is proven feasible, it can be commercialized without having to spend their own funds, precious time or emotional capital hunting for financial backers.
Benefit to Investors
Unlike traditional early stage venture capital fund-based approaches which invest in multitudes of start-up companies with minor variations of relatively simple but unproven ideas, the targeted innovation generation at MINE aims at creating start-up companies with relevant products that are biased toward high growth and a lower investment risk.
Proceeds from the sale of Reality Ventures’ portfolio companies will be re-invested to fund new or advance existing companies generated from MINE, limiting the required overall investment by the partners. Reality Ventures expects that the market will attribute highly-attractive valuations to a majority of its portfolio companies resulting in successful exits with high investment returns. MINE and Reality Ventures expect to deliver an ROI well above the industry average for venture capital funds.
About MINE and Reality Ventures
MINE and Reality Ventures provide a unique vertically integrated corporate ecosystem for the creation of technology companies. A five-stage targeted innovation engineering and technology company creation process called IP Mining™ covers the entire path from the original invention at the core of a new technology to the successful establishment of a company for bringing the corresponding products to market. It offers strategic and financial investors cost-effective, lower risk technology innovation with higher ROI. Headquartered in Berlin with main research and development centers in San Francisco and Berlin, MINE and Reality Ventures operate in the form of transcontinental teams of scientists and engineers led by accomplished innovation executives. For more information, please visit www.MINE.com.
About Rolf Herken
Rolf Herken is one of the most respected and connected visionaries in the software technology industry, specifically in the computer graphics software component and Cloud platform technology fields. In 1986, he founded the company mental images GmbH in Berlin and turned it into the recognized international leader in providing component and platform software for the creation, manipulation and visualization of 3D content, driving the company’s innovative technologies and products since its inception. In 1999, he founded the company incremental images Inc. in San Francisco to develop the world’s first cloud-based, scalable software platform for interactive 3D content accessible from any device. After selling the subsequently merged companies, he left mental images in 2011 to create MINE and Reality Ventures.
About Dassault Systèmes
Dassault Systèmes, the 3DEXPERIENCE Company, provides business and people with virtual universes to imagine sustainable innovations. Its world-leading solutions transform the way products are designed, produced, and supported. Dassault Systèmes’ collaborative solutions foster social innovation, expanding possibilities for the virtual world to improve the real world. The group brings value to over 170,000 customers of all sizes, in all industries, in more than 140 countries. For more information, visit www.3ds.com.
IP Mining and Ingeneering are trademarks of MINE Inc.
CONTACT: Loretta Stevens, Michelle Curran
Double Forte on behalf of MINE
(415) 500-0617, (415) 500-0603