Wirtschaftswoche: The Better Basis

On September 22, 2017, Wirtschaftswoche published an article about the political views of German entrepreneurs on the national election which features Arago CEO Chris Boos’ perspective on the future of digitalization and society in Germany.

Wirtschaftswoche describes Boos as a digital pioneer. The magazine honors Arago’s CEO as the German equivalent to Jeff Bezos or Elon Musk.

The sleeping giant Germany is awakening, Boos states. Until a year ago he was convinced that his country is falling behind. However, since a couple of months he has regained hope. DAX-CEOs want to have a conversation with him, small and medium sized enterprises agree on cooperation contracts with Arago and even politicians are interested in his messages.

Boos expects three issues to be tackled by the upcoming government to strengthen these processes. First, old industries should be closed in a responsible way. In case somebody’s job is replaced by machines, a special salary for preserving knowledge should be established for these people. Second, laws are necessary that enable future innovations and work, not prevent it. For example, the German traffic ministries’ latest drone regulation would prevent accidents without considering its negative impact on innovations as well. Third, he pushes for transforming the German education system: The new narrative should better embrace people gaining experiences. In his view, experienced people can compete with computers – not specialists.

This view correlates with Boos’ personal experiences: When he was a child, his doctors recommended a school for children with special needs. His poor eyesight was considered as an obstacle. Yet, Boos passed the Abitur – the German higher school certificate and even quitted university to found Arago together with his uncle. Boos developed his Artificial Intelligence software for over 20 years until it was ready for the market. Today, Arago has 130 employees and Boos is proud to work in an “asshole-free enterprise”, as he likes to call it. Moreover, Arago’s AI-technology is deployed to customers like the financial services company UBS and the steel company Klöckner.

Boos reviews his success with Arago by giving an example from the past: For centuries the common means of transportation were horse carriages. Even though innovations and fuel were expensive, engineers started developing motorized vehicles. Boos concludes if engineers had continued to develop carriages, we would have lived in a completely different world. He transfers this analogy onto Germany: This time the challenge is to digitally reinvent its industrial hub. Boos considers the fields of AI, autonomous driving and individualized genetic medicine as the most important sectors.

The article also portraits other entrepreneurs, who reshaped their industry and are driven by a societal impetus: The agricultural company Regionalwert AG’s owner Christian Hiß wants politicians to listen to experts who know what’s best for the economy. Teacher Margret Rasfeld talks about the shortcomings in the German education system and thinks challenging situations should be part of the academic everyday life. In addition, the general secretary of the Federal Association of German Foundations Felix Oldenburg sees the capacity of foundations everything but exhausted and asks them to readjust their focus.

Click here for German article.

Arago Redaktion 22. September 2017