The BMI Lab sees itself as a constantly evolving entity. We challenge the status quo and break dominant logic to imagine and create the future of business. We favor small, flexible teams and effective, result-focused communication. Each member is empowered with the autonomy to further develop the BMI Lab.


Our Story

After years researching highly innovative companies across industries, it became clear to Prof. Gassmann and Prof. Frankenberger that the secret of their success was innovative business models. This is how they determined that 90 percent of successful business models were based on re-combinations from other industries.

To share this with the business world and help companies break out of their dominant industry logic, they created the BMI Lab in 2013, a spin-off of the Institute of Technology Management of the University St. Gallen. Since then, we have helped generate novel business model innovations for the utility, retail, automotive, machinery, medical, imaging, insurance, aviation and many other industries.


Our Purpose: Breaking the Dominant Logic

Society has changed – business has not. New technologies and new ways of interacting have emerged. Customers are more demanding than ever. Yet most companies still do business based on outdated logics.

We help you to break with your organization’s dominant logic. With our methodology and tools we can unleash the creativity within your company.



Felix Hofmann


In 2008, Felix co-founded PaperC GmbH, a platform for academic eBooks, serving as its managing director for four years. The breakthrough business model Felix and his founding partners established was recognized with the AKEP Award, and the company was named Germany's Startup of The Year in 2009. He earned his M.A. in Business Innovation at the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland, and got his Diploma from the Berlin School of Economics and Law. Felix is a true business model enthusiast.




Peter Brugger

Innovation Consultant

Peter earned his master's in International Management with a specialization in Entrepreneurship and Innovation from the ESADE Business School, Barcelona, and the University of St. Gallen (in combination with CEMS). As co-founder of Altaselva GmbH, an import/export startup for Peruvian nut-oil, he oversaw development of the company's business plan. He enjoys playing with pattern cards and is fascinated by the world of IoT.




Alen Stepic

Innovation Consultant

Alen has a financial background and holds a Bachelor of Science with a major in Banking and Finance and studied Business Innovation at the University of St. Gallen. During a semester at the Universidad de los Andes in Colombia he got the first time into contact with Design Thinking. This triggered his passion for innovation. He is a tech enthusiast and has practical experience with innovations in banks, mobility and machine building industry. At the BMI Lab, he supervises the BMI Think Tank and thereby ensures the link to academic research. He likes to solve challenging problems. 




Georg von der Ropp

Chairman BMI Lab AG and Managing Director BMI Lab Deutschland GmbH

Prior to joining the BMI Lab, Georg had several leadership positions at Capgemini Germany, most recently as vice president in the CTO field, focusing on digital transformation and cooperation with startups. Following an apprenticeship as an industrial clerk at Siemens AG, he studied computer science at TU München. He earned an Executive MBA from the University of St. Gallen. His many years of experience in large enterprises as well as in the IT and consulting industries positioned Georg to take on the challenge of how to innovate and transform successful companies.




Katharina Erdmann

Innovation Consultant

In close cooperation with the Institute, Katharina helps companies sustainably establish a culture of innovation and creativity to explore new business models outside their comfort zone. Katharina obtained her MSc. in Strategic Management with a specialization in strategic change strategies at the Erasmus University of Rotterdam and the University of St. Gallen, and her Bsc. from Maastricht University School of Business and Economics. She enjoys challenging existing logics and is always looking for new possibilities and approaches. Her mind runs at 100 ideas/second.



Charles Jouanique

Innovation Consultant
BMI Lab Deutschland GmbH

After obtaining his master’s degree in mechanical engineering at the Technical University of Belfort in France, Charles earned his executive MBA in innovation and business creation at the Technical University of Munich. He started his career as a manufacturing consultant and supported multinational manufacturing and automotive companies in Germany for many years. Before founding his own company, he spent 2 years building an advisory team from scratch as an intrapreneur. 



Richard Stechow

Innovation ConsultantBMI Lab Deutschland GmbH

Richard obtained his Dipl.-Ing. in Industrial Engineering at the Brandenburg University of Technology Cottbus-Senftenberg. There, he also worked as a PhD student with his research focusing on the influence of Industry 4.0 on business model innovation. At BMI Lab, he uses his theoretical knowledge and prior practical consulting experience to enthusiastically develop new, meaningful business models. Together with the University of St. Gallen, he currently works on a methodology to create new circular business models




Satoru Watanabe.jpg

Satoru Watanabe

CEO Maximize, Inc
President BMI Lab Japan

Satoru Watanabe is an innovation consultant and experienced entrepreneur. As an innovation consultant, he has translated and introduced leading international innovation methodologies to Japan, including Customer Development by Steve Blank and Business Model Navigator. Satoru is the CEO and founder of Maximize, Inc, an international IT consulting firm, and has more than 20 years of experience assisting international software companies with their market entry and growth in Japan. Prior to founding Maximize, he was senior analyst at Trans Cosmos USA, Inc in Silicon Valley, where he sourced and evaluated early stage companies and solutions for investment. Satoru holds a Master’s Degree from Yale University and a Bachelor's Degree from the University of Tokyo. He serves as a Japan Chief Representative of the Japan Society of Northern California, an NPO which acts as a bridge between Japan and Silicon Valley in the area of innovation.


Join our Team

The core team is supported by innovation researchers and coaches at the Chair of Innovation Management at the Institute of Technology Management, especially in the areas of open innovation, intellectual property strategy, global R&D, and innovation processes.

We are always looking for additions to our offices in Zurich and Munich. Are you open-minded, curious and interested in business model innovation? Email us at or

Marketing Internships in Innovation Consulting

Start: 01.07.2019 or agreement
Workload: 40% or more
Place: Zurich and Berlin

Your Challenge:

  • Design, support, document and contribute in consulting projects

  • Create marketing and social media content

  • Manage and improve customer relationship

  • Research innovative business models (competitor analyses, cross-industry research)

  • Support in daily business activities

  • Contribute to different innovation topics by applying and transferring your knowledge

Your profile:

  • Bachelor or Master student (ideally in Marketing)

  • Creative and having a flair for design

  • Very good conceptual skills

  • Very good writing skills

  • Self-reliant, proactive, flexible and motivated

  • Very good interpersonal and language skills (especially English)

  • Good PowerPoint skills

  • Fundamental knowledge in business model innovation, startups and incubators is an advantage

Your Contact:

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call us. Interested? Send us your CV:

Contact: Felix Hofmann
Phone: +41 (0)79 196 64 36