By Ingrid Süßmann
The upcoming Leipzig Book Fair (March 17-20) will introduce a new initiative to its agenda: Neuland 2.0, a “startup village for digital natives” that will showcase innovative new ideas for the book and media industry.
The Leipzig Book Fair is Germany’s second largest book fair and watering hole for the spring migration of book people—public and professional visitors alike. The focus of the fair is more on connecting with readers than on rights, like the Frankfurt Book Fair.
On March 18-19, the Neuland 2.0 initiative will see fourteen startups present their business ideas in short and interactive elevator pitches and invite interested visitors to explore, test and evaluate each startup idea. The Neuland 2.0 Lounge will host discussions and further demonstrations during these two days.
Oliver Zille, Director of the Leipzig Book Fair, says: “With our project, Neuland 2.0, we’re giving new and innovative ideas and products for the book industry (and the people behind them) a place to shine. In front of an audience of readers and book industry experts, we’re hoping for new inspiration to create and market content.
A jury of three experts—Martin Kurzhals (Storydocks(, André Nikolski (Basislager Coworking), and Eric Weber (SpinLab)— chosen the following fourteen startups from a pool of more than thirty applicants:
Beemgee Author Software
Web-based collaboration tool for authors and editors
Digital reading technology that aims to make the reading experience more focused and efficient
Transmedia storytelling sStrategies through a combined infrastructure and media management system
Mobile reading app that aims to bridge the gap between mobile and in-print books
Prototype for delivering browser-based local content
Digital promotion via virtual intelligence, interactive signage, hardware and software
Non-fiction titles transformed into powerful packs readable in 15 minutes
Travel app, based on images rather than search words
Using innovative ink to “print” electronic components onto printed packages and products
Social network for literature
Browser-based multimedia school books
Bookmark, search, filter and sort web URLs and information
Digital platform for selling rights