Are we already irrelevant
Erik and Stefan Pfannmöller: "The comparison with others is irrelevant"
German Sports Aid: What role does making money play in this?
Stefan: Money is the means with which you can change things. But it's not about the interest to get rich. For me, the meaning of capital is not consumption, but building up companies or organizations with which you can change something. If you want to change the world, you need capital, and with more capital you can change more. Our parents are scientists, so I always look jealous, they develop something, they can change the world with a catalyst, for example. Scientists have ideas and companies then implement them. There are many ways. No matter whether scientist, entrepreneur, artist or athlete - everyone is a role model in different places.
German Sports Aid: Do you have the feeling that you were treated differently or given preferential treatment due to your sporting successes when starting your career?
Erik: Sport is a great door opener.
Most of the attributes associated with competitive sport, such as perseverance and determination, are two incredibly important qualities.
This gives you a head start in confidence, it is easy to start a conversation and potential investors have a positive attitude towards you.
Stefan: I also think I would never have gotten any money from an investor if I hadn't won the Olympic medal, so it paid off several times over. I played out my strengths as an athlete. At that time, studi.vz was considered the hottest start-up in Germany, and I thought to myself: “Why isn't there something like that for athletes?” As an athlete, creating a network for athletes was my USP. That is why we were able to quickly convince the investors with “Netzathleten” in the pitch. Sport is super positive and people perceive you accordingly. Prominent athletes, such as Felix Neureuther, could set up a marketing agency without any problems.
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