Meet Matthias...

Year of Birth:


Degree Program:

Master´s degree Financial Economics

University: Erasmus University Rotterdam
Previous Internships: Wuppertaler Rundschau, Westdeutsche Zeitung Düsseldorf, Gruner+Jahr Hamburg New Media Ventures, Gruner+Jahr Exclusive&Living Digital, Random House New York
Interests: Strategic Management, Controlling and Finance, Consulting

Student Challenger since 2009

Describe your educational background. Where did / do you study, what degrees did / will you receive?
I am a student of General Management with the study track of Business Information Systems at the European Business School (EBS) in Oestrich-Winkel, Germany. During my semester abroad at the University of Iowa, I participated in the finance and investment program. I specialized in corporate finance and accounting at the EBS. I will finish my bachelor’s degree by June 2011.

Describe your career history. What have been your professional experiences?
After initial professional experiences at the strategy departments of several medium-sized businesses, I worked for two divisions of Gruner+Jahr Hamburg where I contributed to an M&A-evaluation-project and supported the restructuring of the National Geographic business division. I subsequently gained international working experience during my internship at the Digital Publishing Development of Random House, New York. Referring to additional extracurricular activities, I was Chairman of the EBS Big Band, participated in the IT and Investment resort of our university, and was member of the student council.

What attracted you to Bertelsmann and your internships? What is / was your favorite aspect about your job?
Bertelsmann perfectly finds the synthesis between entrepreneurship and innovation on one hand, but also provides the resources and the multinational business network on the other hand. My voice and ideas are not determined by my tenure, but rather, proficiency. Its decentralized and diversified firm structure gives me the opportunity to take over responsibility and show leadership qualities from the outstart. The diverse and international backgrounds of Bertelsmann’s employees inspire me daily and leave no room for cultural or gender stereotypes.

What has been your most challenging / rewarding / exciting task or project thus far?
In cooperation with Random House and the European Business School, I prepared a practical seminar paper which analyses the process structure and sensibleness of a “Demand Media” business model. The paper functions as a basis for M&A-decision-making and finds its relevance in the upcoming board of directors meeting. The newness of the business model made it challenging but very exciting to work on, as it is the first academic paper which analyses “Demand Media” from a scientific point of view.

If you could meet anyone from history, living or dead, who would it be? Any other role models? – And why?
Ludwig van Beethoven – I am an enthusiastic pianist and I highly admire the musical ingenuity and visions the deaf composer had.

What qualities do you feel are necessary to be a successful employee at Bertelsmann?
Employees have to be skilled and dedicated to what they are doing. They have to be willing to take over responsibility not only at the entry level, but also exhibit soft skills and team qualities. Moreover, Bertelsmann demands highly motivated entrepreneurs which are fostered by their curiosity and innovative minds in a complex and ever changing market environment.

What was / is a typical day during your internship like?
Fortunately, I can say that there was no typical day during my Bertelsmann internships. The variety of people, the versatile of projects, and the accomplishment of complexity is what I highly appreciated. It encouraged my every day's excitement. 

What are your professional goals? Any others ;-) ?
What fascinates me is to discover opportunities and satisfy a customer’s need by transforming a business model into reality. With respect to this challenge, I launched my own startup company and thereby made a little step towards my professional goal. In my point of view, Bertelsmann provides an inspiring, motivating, and collaborative working environment which exhibit the kind of entrepreneurial character and the variety, freedom, and growth potential that I am looking for.

If you had one word to describe Bertelsmann – what would it be?