Advisory board of the Ministry of Economic Affairs causes criticism

Good press should stimulate local IPOs. (Photo:

An advisory committee, which also includes some well-known startup founders, demands that Federal Minister of Economics Peter Altmaier impose regulations on the press to report on IPOs. Altmaier distances himself from the demands.

The Young Digital Economy Advisory Board advises the Federal Ministry of Economics and has now called for far-reaching cuts in reporting on IPOs in a position paper. The document says that the press should be required to report on smaller IPOs. In addition, “the press should be disciplined to provide factual, correct and complete information”. In addition, the authors would like a real name requirement for online forums and unspecified liability options for bloggers. The positive reporting guaranteed in this way should then be able to publish the companies pushing onto the trading floor on their website, “without paying horrific license fees to the authors.”

After that Handelsblatt had reported on the position paper, there was criticism. The German Association of Journalists (DJV) declared: “The advisory board’s demands on the media testify to a complete ignorance of journalism and its tasks in a democracy.” Federal Minister of Economics Peter Altmaier then tried to limit the damage and declared Twitter: “Freedom of the press is an outstanding basic right that we are obliged to protect.” Altmaier said he was not aware that the document had been published on his ministry’s website and ordered its deletion. The position paper is now no longer available on the website of the Federal Ministry of Economics. A copy can still be found in the Google-Cache.

Position paper comes from well-known founders

As the authors of the position paper, Lea-Sophie Cramer, Alex von Frankenberg and named Christoph Gerlinger. Cramer co-founded the successful e-commerce startup Amorelie in 2013 and was head of the company until 2019. Von Frankenberg is the managing director of the high-tech start-up fund, which specializes in start-up financing. Gerlinger was also active as an entrepreneur and venture capitalist and is now managing director of SGT German Private Equity, which operated as the German Startups Group until 2020.

In addition to the three named, the Young Digital Economy advisory board includes a further 26, some of whom are quite well-known, from the German startup scene. Including the founder Miriam Wohlfarththat focus on Twitter on behalf of the advisory body apologized and explained: “The Advisory Board is fully committed to the freedom of the press.” According to Wohlfarth, a non-final working version of the paper was inadvertently published and the document would be exchanged immediately.

Almost finished!

Please click on the link in the confirmation email to complete your registration.

Would you like more information about the newsletter?
Find out more now

You might be interested in that too

Categories:   General