Florian Noell, EMEA startups, scaleups and venturing leader at PwC, is one of the leading corporate venturing professionals in our 2024 Powerlist.

Building a startup ecosystem is key to Florian Noell’s mission as global venturing leader at PwC. Since starting the venture group at the accounting and auditing firm four years ago, the venture fund’s portfolio has grown to 20 investments.

“We pioneered this,” says Noell of setting up the venture group. “Now there are other examples inside the big four professional service firms, but when we started this four years ago, we were the first in our industry to do this.”

The venture fund invests in internet-of-things technologies for the industrial sector, as well as AI, climate and business software applications. While the venture group makes direct investments in startups, it also takes LP positions in external funds.

In addition to direct investing, the group builds ventures from internal expertise by establishing joint ventures with other companies and external management teams. This model is part of Noell’s mission to use PwC as a spring broad for building a startup ecosystem. The company has three joint ventures up and running and four more under construction. These ventures are more closely related to the parent’s core business than its startup investments.

The joint venture model has proven a success in building a brand for entrepreneurship at PwC. “Companies are now approaching us to look at their business idea and asking if we could be their partner for the next joint venture,” says Noell. “PwC is increasingly recognised as a company to collaborate with and is known for its capabilities in the venturing space.”

An additional venturing team also consults corporations on setting up their own corporate venture capital units and advises startups.

Noell founded the German Startups Association in 2012. The group, which has more than one thousand startups and over 100 corporate members, holds networking events, advises on legislation and creates research on the importance of startups to innovation.

Powerlist cover

The Global Corporate Venturing Powerlist represents the 100
individuals spearheading the future of the corporate venturing industry.

These individuals excel in terms of their venturing approach and structure, number and quality of portfolio companies and in their contributions to the corporate venturing profession.

See the full 2024 Powerlist here.