A few weeks ago, I put my last notes into the thick, worn-out leather notebook that was given to me on my first day at Rocket Internet five years ago. This notebook had always accompanied me during my travels in Asia, when I was building an e-commerce group from 10 people in Pakistan to 400 people in 5 Asian markets and more recently when I was in charge of finding new ideas for Rocket’s incubator and making investments as part of Rocket’s investment team.
Personally, I started earning my own money from side hustles when I was 8 years old and created my first company aged 16. The entrepreneurial force has always been strong in me and that’s why I joined Rocket after my studies at WHU. I believe that for young people Rocket is the ideal training ground for entrepreneurship. There is no other place in the world that puts as much trust in the hands of smart, hungry and driven youngsters willing to get their hands dirty. I’m extremely grateful to my colleagues and the management board of Rocket that helped to acquire a toolbox for building and operating hyper-growth companies as well as selecting winning business models over the past 5 years.
Now, it’s time to pick up a new notebook and elevate myself to the next level. I’m thrilled to officially launch 10x Value Partners today, which will be both a think tank and venture studio.
I fundamentally believe that technology has the potential to solve many of humanity’s biggest problems. Hence, it’s obvious to me that I can personally have the maximum impact on society by (1) enabling as many people as possible to become successful entrepreneurs and (2) by building companies that have the potential to solve the world’s problems. I think combining the elements of a think tank with a venture studio holds the potential for enabling the greatest, most forward-thinking minds in technology to achieve greater success by building companies together. Basically, we will combine Silicon Valley’s innovation power with Rocket-type execution power.
I think it’s highly necessary to create this company because now more than ever change in society is accelerating due to the advent of new technologies, both to a positive and negative extent. It’s obvious that AI will displace many human workers, both in manual jobs like cab drivers and truckers as well as white-collar jobs like accountants and lawyers. We are already having massive issues with youth unemployment in many parts of Europe. And in the US, for the first time in history new generations are expected to be less wealthy and healthy than their parents.
In my opinion, the extrapolation and conclusion of these trends constitute the basis for massive civil unrest in the future. The early signs of this can be seen in the rise of right-wing parties all over the Western world. However, the conclusion of these trends is inevitable as driven entrepreneurs will evoke these changes no matter what. The invisible hand is at work.
While a few years ago I thought that education will be the main lever for combatting the impacts on society, I now have an adjusted view in which technology will also be the solution for many of the problems caused by its advancement. And exactly these problems I am planning to solve with my company 10x Value Partners. What I need to pair this with: 1) Great people with lots of drive and high energy and 2) fantastic investors who would like to join the race.
So, what’s next: I will be travelling to most major European cities over the next 3–6 months. It would be great to connect if you have big ideas, want to have impact, if you can help me with my plan or if you can introduce me to people who can. Don’t be shy, even if we haven’t met before. Also, be sure to subscribe to my blog if you want to learn how you can 10x your results in a year, why there should be a marketplace for trading human organs and why corruption to some extent is good for society.