Innovation earns a stand at the fair: In early March, the Frankfurter Buchmesse (11-15 October 2017) launched its third Wildcard campaign. Applicants with creative business ideas were invited to compete for the Wildcard to win a free 8-square-metre stand at the Book Fair. More than 200 applications from over 20 countries worldwide were received – totalling 64 more than last year. Many of these submissions combined app functions with the dynamics of networks, e.g. digital city guidebooks or collaborative authoring tools.
The winner of this year’s Frankfurter Buchmesse Wildcard is the advisory literature portal litnity, founded by Dörte Brilling and Birgit Kidd. With their DIY portal HANDMADE Kultur, the two Hamburg natives have already built a business based on online community recommendations. With litnity, they aim to extend the emotionally charged choice of what to read to the Internet with just as much emotion.
“I’m very pleased that this time around two founders from the DIY community have won the Wildcard. I hope that, using this same DIY approach, they will make a success of their literary portal. The Frankfurter Buchmesse – like the sector as a whole – needs newcomers from other fields with fresh, community-driven business models”, says Katja Böhne, Vice President Marketing & Communications at the Frankfurter Buchmesse.
“The Wildcard gives us a great opportunity to bring the literary community together at the Book Fair’s Lit & Sit. We’re already looking forward to interacting with readers, authors, reviewers, bloggers and publishers. It’s so fantastic that the Frankfurter Buchmesse is helping us get started like this!” say winners Dörte Brilling and Birgit Kidd of litnity.
“Winning the Wildcard was a milestone in our company’s brief history. I’d even venture to say that things never would have moved forward as quickly without the attention it brought us: Just a few months later we were taken over by Ullstein Buchverlage GmbH”, reports Felix Plötz of Plötz & Betzholz Verlag.
“The Wildcard was a great opportunity to call attention to our multimedia textbook (mBook). Moreover, with the ‘Edu Couch’ we were able to create a space for the topic of digital education, helping inspire new ideas”, says Benjamin Heinz, CMO of the Institut für digitales Lernen (Institute for Digital Learning).