November 1, 2019
Munich, Germany, 30.10.2019 – Katrin Bacic, Head of Development at Wayra Germany will take over the management of Telefónica’s start-up accelerator on an interim basis, starting November 1st. Christian Lindener, Wayra’s current Managing Director, will leave the company at the end ofOctober. The selection process for a permanent successor is already underway.
Bacic will manage the Munich-based company until the position is filled. Bacic has been Wayra Germany’s Head of Venture Development since January 2018, acting as the interface between investors, stakeholders and external development programs, as well as the scouted start-ups. She is also responsible for cooperation between the start-ups and Telefónica's business units.
Bacic has extensive experience in promoting innovation: Prior to joining Wayra, she worked in innovation and business development for Telefónica for more than twelve years.
Managing Director Christian Lindener will leave the company at his own request. As CEO of Wayra Germany since February 2017, he was responsible for the set-up of the Telefonica start-up hub. During this time he expanded the team and gave the accelerator programme its strategic focus, specifically promoting technological innovation and accelerating deployment in the parent company. In doing so, Wayra is now established as an in integral part of Telefónica’s growth strategy.
In parallel, Lindener also pushed ahead with the transformation of the company into a Corporate Venturing provider. Today, as Wayra as a Service, the Open Innovation Hub enables other companies and businesses to cooperate with start-ups in a meaningful and target-oriented way. The results of the strategy are clear: in June 2019, the business magazine CAPITAL recognised Wayra with an award and positioned the company in the Top 3 of the fastest scaling digital laboratories in Germany.
"We deeply regret Christian Lindener's decision to leave the company. As a thought leader and visionary, he has significantly shaped the development of Wayra Germany in recent years and ensured that Wayra has gained importance in the innovation and start-up scene far beyond the ecosystem of Telefónica. We look forward to driving this positive development forward and wish him all the best for his future career," says Bacic.