Originally posted on Gigaom:

Rocket Internet can fairly be described as the European tech scene’s pantomime villain. The Samwer Brothers’ incubator-slash-accelerator has a wide variety of companies in its stable, and few are what you might call “original”.

You know Zappos? Zalando is Rocket’s quite-similar offering. Groupon? CityDeal. Airbnb? Wimdu. Pinterest? Pinspire. Fab? Bamarang. DropGifts is the latest – check it out; it may remind you of Wrapp. The list goes on.

In an entertaining rant earlier this month, Jason Calacanis derided the Samwers as “copycat thieves” (one of the milder phrases he used).

Note the enthusiasm in that video of the crowd applauding Calacanis – those are some of the Berlin startups who aren’t Rocket companies. They don’t like Rocket. Is it indignation or jealousy? Perhaps a smattering of both.

That’s because Rocket Internet’s business model often works extremely well.

Dominik Richter, the CEO of Rocket’s latest baby, HelloFresh, tells…

View original 652 more words

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