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Almost five years after its foundation, the INSTART group, an innovative group of companies from the automotive sector with its headquarters in Ingolstadt, has successfully established itself on the market. Despite the past and current crises, the five companies are proving stable and currently employ more than 200 people at seven international locations - and the trend is upwards. With an expected annual turnover of 22 million euros for 2022, the INSTART group has also achieved its best result to date and can plan well for the coming years. 

At the beginning of 2018, five highly specialized companies had joined forces to form the INSTART group and have since been operating synergistically on the market under the claim "Develop future technology - experience future technology". The focus is on the leading technologies of electromobility, autonomous driving and big data. The products and development competencies of the INSTART group support customers in conception and development through industrialization to series production. Customers include the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA), the VW Group, BMW, Daimler as well as Bosch and Continental, a large number of German key players in the automotive industry.

Developing future technology - experiencing future technology

With the TECH companies e.telligent (Ingolstadt, Regensburg), digitalwerk (Regensburg, Ingolstadt, Dresden, Stuttgart) and ip camp (Ingolstadt, Budapest), the INSTART group covers decisive future topics in the technology sector. e.telligent has specialized in the series development of control units and battery management systems in the field of electromobility and has launched e.CoSys, a highly automated and intuitive tool chain for ASPICE-compliant development. digitalwerk, as a software expert, has focused on the development of software tools, tool chains and platforms - ADTF in the context of driver assistance systems and DW OSR for legal certainty in open source - and not only offers sales and service, but also applies the products in its own projects. ip camp has a high level of expertise in the area of Big Data and has dedicated itself to simplifying data analyses, among other things with its Mercury and RED tools.

The three TECH companies are supported by two administrative units. One is the marketing and communications agency CUBE brand communications (Ingolstadt, Neuburg, Bolzano), which, as a specialist in strategic automotive marketing, is responsible for the positioning and external presentation of the INSTART group and its member companies. Another part of the group of companies is the digital shared service provider INSTART consult (Ingolstadt), which focuses on the digitalization of administrative processes and provides administrative support for the group.

Shaping the mobility transformation

The INSTART group has its origins in the development service provider BFFT Fahrzeugtechnik, which became part of the EDAG Group in 2013. At that time, the company had just under 1,000 employees at several national and international locations and was one of the leading automotive electronics development companies in Germany with its areas of expertise in electromobility, driver assistance systems and connectivity. The guiding principle in setting up and positioning the new group of companies was to work on the same subject areas, but instead of project services to focus on developing and establishing its own technologies and products, explains Markus Fichtner, both co-founder and co-owner of the INSTART group and previously of BFFT Fahrzeugtechnik.

For Fichtner, this clear separation of the core areas is the great advantage of the construct: "Each company can thus concentrate on its main competences. In addition, however, there are some interfaces, especially in the technical area, where we can benefit from each other and create synergy effects."  Fichtner, who manages the group together with his twin brother Frank Fichtner and Dr. Christian Matzner, believes that the group is well positioned for the future, even in times of crisis and beyond: "Thanks to our mobile and digital basic structure, we were also able to master a challenge such as the Corona pandemic. The all-defining future topics of electromobility, software, data and digitization are also precisely our focus areas - with our know-how, we not only want to accompany the mobility transformation, but also help shape it," the entrepreneur concludes.

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