B3 The Hub

About B3

In the midst of the dynamic evolution of the Web3 landscape, and recognizing its strategic significance as the emerging internet infrastructure for businessesmodels of the future, Bertelsmann Investments is harnessing its Web3 endeavors under the banner of B3-The Hub. The initiative is designed to facilitate knowledge exchange between Bertelsmann companies and the Web3 community, positioning BI as a pivotal partner for Web3 entrepreneurs. In 2022, for the second consecutive year, the global investment in Web3 startups surpassed 30 billion USD. While investment pace has significantly gone down in 2023, the adoption of Web3 technologies is increasing.

The initiative's core objective is to provide a home for Web3 within BI at the intersection of corporate VC and corporate strategy, making the strategic significance and complexity of this ecosystem accessible to Bertelsmann. The Hub will operate in close collaboration with Bertelsmann Tech & Data Alliance's Web3 Leadership Circle and Bertelsmann University. Together, we're charting a course for the future of the internet, and we invite you to join us on this exciting journey.

The initiative consists of three, strategic pillars:

Fund and selective direct investments

Fund of Fund investments help us activate our network, identify potential partnerships for the Group, and gain valuable market intelligence while mitigating risk and diversifying capital allocation. This exposure will not only give us access to a wider network of founders, but it will also help us establish Joint Ventures and new types of strategic partnerships if needed. This increased exposure to new and emerging business models will serve as a hedge against disruption for Bertelsmann as a company and for our Bertelsmann Investments portfolio. Our partners can benefit from our entrepreneurial expertise, which we have gained from partnering with hundreds of businesses and studying thousands of different business models. As Web3 brings new technological knowledge, many of the new business models we partner with can be a value-add for the operating businesses. In addition to funding, Bertelsmann Investments can open doors and facilitate partnerships with these units, thereby scaling the startup's operations through the divisional network.

Education and understanding

With infrastructural paradigm shifts always comes the challenge that an adoption may have wide scale implications. If we take the most recent, comparable paradigm-shift – with the rise of cloud computing - as an example, that becomes obvious. Companies like AWS were not only born out of such a paradigm-shift, they are without alternative in a world of interactive, user generated content that is not downloaded, but streamed. Not every cloud offering matches every specific demand, but for different demands, there is different cloud offerings. In Web3, we might very well witness a similar situation. Identifying the best suitable, potential partners is closely related to departments within large organizations that have exposure to the venture ecosystem in Web3. Translating and transmitting the strategic insight we gather from our existing investments can fertilize the ground for decision makers on an operational and Business Unit level. Hence, we have started to undertake tailored efforts in informing Bertelsmann leadership on the relevance of Web3. We will co-develop regular workshops and events that serve as knowledge transfer events and pursue the goal of making innovative approaches by startups tangible and accessible to our decision makers.

Strategic Ventures and Partnerships

Beyond these operative endeavors, we will expand our strategic insight by engaging with the global Web3 community, connect with Key Opinion Leaders, Researchers and Pioneers in the space and partner with academic institutions to be at the forefront of Web3 innovation. Engaging with key opinion leaders in the industry shall provide BI with valuable insights and help us to stay informed about the latest developments and trends in the field. Additionally, by partnering with academic institutions, BI can tap into cutting-edge research and gain access to talented students and researchers who can help drive innovation. Overall, this approach of strategic ventures and partnerships allows BI to stay nimble and adaptable in the ever-changing Web3 space, and gives it the resources and expertise it needs to grow and succeed.

Media library


Martin El-Khouri
Martin El-KhouriHead of B3 - The Hub
Bertelsmann Investments
+49 (0)5241-80-79135