Rethink Ventures launches with €50m specialist fund reshaping the future of mobility and logistics

Rethink Ventures launches a venture capital fund investing into the next generation of startups leading the transformation towards a clean, safe and digital future of mobility and logistics.

  • Our first fund generation focuses on Seed to Series A investments across Europe, with focus on innovators in the mobility, automotive and logistics sectors
  • The fund is backed by industry-leading corporate partners ZF Ventures (CVC arm of tier 1 automotive supplier ZF Friedrichshafen AG), Hellmann Worldwide Logistics, KION Group, Berylls and HAVI, joined by the European Investment Fund, experienced entrepreneurs and several family offices.
  • As a climate-tech SFDR 8 fund, sustainability is a core value of the business. The long term vision is to create solutions at scale that will decarbonise the transportation of people and goods, transform the mobility and energy industry, and have a true positive impact.


Rethink Ventures Team, © 2023


Munich, March 14th, 2023

Rethink Ventures announces the launch of its first €50m specialist fund focused on mobility, automotive and logistics innovators leading the transformation towards a clean, safe and digital future.

Backing the most innovative and exciting early-stage mobility and logistics startups in Europe, Rethink Ventures partners closely with its founders to drive their companies’ long-term growth. Rethink operates as a bridge between its portfolio companies, corporate investors and leading executives to establish partnerships and jointly scale innovative technologies.

The fund’s thesis-driven investment focus is on next-generation vehicle technologies (software defined, connected, autonomously operated, new powertrains), mobility (providing comfortable, safe and affordable mobility for everyone), logistics (digital, automated and sustainable operations) and energy (infrastructure to power a clean, emission-free future of transportation).

Rethink Ventures is supported by top-tier corporate investors such as ZF Ventures, Hellmann Worldwide Logistics, KION Group, Berylls and HAVI. Through these partnerships, Rethink Ventures has access to deep technology and market know-how that serves as a valuable foundation for its investment decisions and founders’ support.

The founding team consists of experienced General Partners with a strong track record, and a team with diverse investment, tech and industry expertise. Jens-Philipp Klein hails from Atlantic Labs and brings more than 10 years of experience as an early-stage investor, having invested early into mobility startups such as Vimcar, Cluno and Bliq. Matthias Schanze was previously with the €1bn Siemens-backed venture fund Next47, where he led the mobility practice and helped set up the “Catalyst” program. They are joined by an experienced team which includes a powerful network of venture partners, scale-up founders and investors such as Sven von Loh (Leasingtime), Artur Hasselbach (VW Commercial Vehicles Lab, Orderbird) and Heiko Huber (Techfounders, eGym).

Rethink Ventures General Partners Matthias Schanze and Jens-Philipp Klein

Jens-Philipp Klein says, “The transportation sector faces significant challenges as the global demand for mobility and logistics continues to grow. With more than 25% of greenhouse gas emissions coming from this sector and externalities such as congestion and the significant usage of physical space, there is a lot of pressure to rapidly change the way we move people and goods. Our mission is to back early-stage startups that address these challenges and help them scale their technologies and products using our capital, deep domain expertise and network.”

Matthias Schanze adds, “As a specialist fund, our top priority is to provide unparalleled support to our portfolio companies while adding long-term value to our corporate partners. We are creating a mutually beneficial ecosystem that creates a positive impact for all. For our corporate partners, we facilitate access to the dynamic startup ecosystem, providing a rich source of innovation and opportunities for growth.”

Rethink Ventures is committed to driving positive impact and sustainability, and is regulated as an SFDR article 8 fund. To ensure responsible investment practices, the firm has developed a proprietary sustainability framework to assess the impact potential of every investment early on in the investment process and continuously report the impact of the combined portfolio to the funds’ investors.

So far, Rethink Ventures has already invested in three exceptional startups on a mission to usher in the future of mobility and logistics. Deftpower, an automotive charging platform that allows companies to launch, manage, and scale electric charging offerings to their customers, Shipzero, a data-driven platform to measure and reduce CO2 emissions in global freight transportation, and Rydes, a SaaS solution for corporations to foster sustainable employee mobility by giving their employees access to various transport offerings.

Tobias Bohnhoff, co-founder of Shipzero, says, “We are thrilled to have partnered with Rethink Ventures as our seed investor. Their deep domain expertise in logistics has been a great asset and their ability to open doors to corporate partners has enabled us to win new customers and work on exciting new technology partnerships.”