Berlin – FSG’s office is empty today, since all of us are working from home in respons to the new Coronavirus. What else is happening in Berlin?

Here’s your FSG Update from Berlin, where the streets are getting more empty by the minute, while temperatures are rising. Starting Wednesday, all Berlin stores except grocery stores, will have to close their doors.

FSG is not alone in going in to ‚home-office mode‘. Berlin’s mobile bank N26 has completely closed its physical doors. According to the German news website on the start-up scene, Gründerszene, N26 is a fintech where working from home is not something the management normally encourages. More than 1.000 N26 employees are working from home.

Meanwhile, the European Commission has said it has 164 million euros available for start-ups that could come up with technologies and innovations that will help prevent the new Coronavirus from spreading. Deadline for sending in a plan for the ‚Corona accelerator‘ is March 18th end-of-day.

Some German start-ups are benefiting from the new Coronavirus. 18-year old Nils Reichardt sees that downloads of his home schooling app Sharezone are getting through the roof. His app can be used by students to send in homework to teachers also working from home. Also downloads on the website Lehrermarktplatz.de have sky rocketet in Germany, with a record of over 100.000 downloads over the last weekend.

Many people here in Germany have been stocking up on toilet paper. Also the start up Happypo is benefiting. Happypo, started its business in mobile bidets in 2018 and now has a message on their website that meanwhile they have limited stock, indicating that their sales increased thanks to the virus.

Another questions being asked in Germany now that the Coronavirus is spreading, is if cash money, a payment method many Germans prefer over paying by card, can carry the virus. Read more on that here.

In German politics, Friedrich Merz, one of the possible future Chansellors from the German political party CDU, has been tested positive with the new Coronavirus, according to Spiegel.

That’s it for today. We hope you all stay safe and healthy. Take care of yourself and of each other, FSG.