Holger G. Weiss (Co-Founder, CEO) and Patrick Weissert (Co-Founder, COO) Robert Rieger
What inspired you to found your startup?
There was a day when I realized that I was using my phone almost constantly while creeping from one red traffic light to another. Of course, I knew it was illegal and very dangerous. I was wondering why there was no real solution to this problem, and started to dig deeper.
How are you different? What is your unique value proposition?
Our product, Chris, is the first digital assistant made for drivers. The smart retrofit device works in every car, listens, and talks even without an internet connection. It can reliably access apps cross-platform, and has built-in mics that hear and understand the driver perfectly.
How do you define success for yourself and your company?
Success is doing work that matters.
What do you want to achieve next year?
In one year, Chris has been launched in three markets, and speaks two languages. Our company has 40 people, and runs interesting POCs with the Automotive industry.
Why do people want to work at your company?
We offer employees a chance to join a highly agile team of entrepreneurial and smart colleagues from all over the world, with insights into one of the most promising tech ecosystems: AI / Automotive.
What has been the most important milestone so far?
Launching our first product Chris, the digital assistant for drivers, at IFA 2018 and delivering the product to our crowdfunding supporters.
Looking back at your whole development story — what makes you most proud?
Launching a complex hardware product with artificial intelligence, voice and gesture control, and advanced UX / UI into the automotive aftermarket two years after the initial idea!
Where do you see your company in 5 years?
In five years, Chris will be way smarter, and will speak more languages. More services will be connected to the platform. More and more people will use Chris as software-only, as they’ll have connected screens in their cars. Some carmakers will build Chris into their newest car models.
What is your impression of launching a startup from your based city?
For building an automotive software company, Berlin is the right place. The city attracts a lot of people, and it connects various other spots, like Silicon Valley, London, and Tel Aviv, just by being in between them. Personally, it is very helpful having such a strong network here.
What is your impression of the german startup scene? Would you change anything?
It grew up. These days you have a lot of strong startups in Berlin, Munich and other hubs. More and more startups working at real tech issues with bold, international visions. The number of investors is steadily growing.
German Autolabs was featured in “The Hundert Vol. 10 – Startups of Germany“, November 2018.