CBO is a holding company and project structure founded in 2015. CBO forms the framework for the entrepreneurial activities of the owner and managing director Andreas Gebhard.

As a laboratory, we develop business and project ideas to create, develop and implement new things. We also support contemporary artists and have a small art collection.

We are convinced that an emancipatory attitude is the prerequisite for sustainable, economic success. Our goal is to foster and implement structures in innovative ideas and projects that eventually have a positive impact on society.

The name Creator Broker Owner (CBO) is based on a theory of the organizational psychologist Prof. Peter Kruse (1955-2015). He described the role of the creative who develops new ideas (creator), the networker who markets innovations (broker), and the experts who possess deep knowledge (owner), as three basic building blocks which work together to create something new.

When developing projects, CBO is guided by this understanding of roles which combines seemingly disparate roles into one new approach to innovation.

Thank you for your interest in our work! If you have any questions, ideas or suggestions, just get in touch here and via our social media channels!

Principles

CBO projects are based on a clear social stance that is given priority over rapid growth or profit.

We invest our energy in companies that serve social diversity, are ecologically sustainable, come from the creative industry, or deal with free or open source software. If all of the topics mentioned are a central components of CBO, the latter is a focus. The complex aspects of free and open source software for society, companies and state institutions can be found in almost all of our projects.

Instruments

We use different tools to achieve our goals. CBO operates companies such as Plain Schwarz as a wholly owned subsidiary. The team behind Plain Schwarz has been inspiring the global software developer community with open source-centered events for many years. Plain Schwarz have recently gained expertise in digital formats and are now booked by customers from various industries.

For the first steps of a project, we use our own CBO project subsidiaries to start new concepts without the burden of a formal foundation. This infrastructure enables CBO to implement prototypes quickly and without great effort. Two projects from 2021, the Female Football Academy and BAKER Berlin, would have been inconceivable without this structure.

CBO also owns shares in companies, e.g. in re: publica, and has been able to build up a small contemporary art collection as part of various projects with artists.

Deals

Our offer is more than the sum of its individual parts. Attitude, courage and experience are characteristics that we can bring to projects in different ways. Structures for the implementation of project ideas and business concepts are in place. Consulting and creative direction are services that we have already included in many digitization projects. We have a full-service network for extensive support.

The vision and purpose of CBO is to initiate, promote and accompany creative activity. Bringing new things into the world requires a lot of strength from entrepreneurs and artists alike. CBO accompanies you in three development steps: Incubate, Enable, Implement. If you want to learn more about how we do this, please do not hesitate to ask us, we are happy to have a chat!

Discontinued Projects

The foundation of CBO in 2015 was based on Andreas Gebhard’s decision to develop a new structure with which he could organize early-stage investments. During this time, Andreas became involved as a business angel for the first time. Overall, several investments were made in start-ups from the sustainable consumer goods, HR, work organization and international cooperation sectors in the first few years.

All these companies in which CBO was involved no longer exist today. The reasons for the failure of these companies were, among other things, insufficient market analysis, overpowering competitors, faulty role allocation or unsustainable business models.

These costly experiences of failure led to the first substantial change in strategy at CBO. For several years, the company’s focus was on supporting artists and on presenting and purchasing works of art.

Structures

2019 marked the beginning of a restructuring process. Step by step, CBO developed into a holding company for the founder’s successful investments, and into an interdisciplinary structure where business ideas and customer projects can be started and implemented.

CBO is now in the third phase of its corporate history. The insights gained from diverse entrepreneurial experiences have helped form the foundation for our current structure.

Andreas Gebhard is the sole owner of Creator Broker Owner GmbH [HRB 170087 B].

100% subsidiaries of Creator Broker Owner GmbH are:

  • Plain Schwarz UG [HRB 205726 B] with its own event formats such as Berlin Buzzwords or FOSS Backstage
  • Creator Broker Owner Project UG [HRB 205743 B] with the current development projects Female Football Academy and BAKER Berlin

Creator Broker Owner GmbH has a stake of at least 50% in:

  • Spree Biennale UG [HRB 217573 B]
  • newthinking GmbH [HRB 102015 B]. newthinking, in turn, has a 50% stake in republica GmbH

In 2019, the companies in which Creator Broker Owner GmbH is involved achieved a turnover of over 7 million euros.

Team

The CBO-team currently includes: