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DIGITAL X: Enabling exchange and networking despite social distancing

Is Covid-19 forcing us to make a virtue out of necessity? How has Corona impacted the digital transformation and how can the DIGITAL X digitization initiative support SMEs? An interview with Thomas Spreitzer, responsible for SME Sales and Marketing Business Customers at Telekom Deutschland.
Telekom Germany GmbH
September 14, 2020
Thomas Spreitzer 1000x450
This text has been automatically translated from German to English.

Mr. Spreitzer, DIGITAL X is the largest European digitization initiative for SMEs. What are the most important needs of SMEs in the area of digitization?

Spreitzer: First of all, SMEs are the backbone of our economy in Germany. Nowhere else in the world are there as many global market leaders and hidden champions as here. Most employees work in the SME sector. Their innovative strength is immense. But the competition is not sleeping, and competition has become noticeably stronger in recent years. Everyone agrees that digitization is the best way for Germany to maintain its leading position worldwide. However, many SMEs often lack an exchange of ideas at eye level and thus a source of inspiration for digital innovation. This is what we offer with DIGITAL X. Many discussions with companies have shown that it is precisely this exchange and networking with others that helps them understand how digitization works best for them. This networking takes place at DIGITAL X.

One of the most topical themes of DIGITAL X is that digitization efforts are a highly effective means of countering the effects of the Corona crisis. What exactly do you advise entrepreneurs to do?

Spreitzer: Medium-sized companies were hit particularly hard by Corona. It turned out that those companies whose digitization projects were already advanced were more resilient in dealing with the consequences of the crisis.That's why I advise all decision-makers to take a bold approach. Think digital wherever your company allows it. The first step of digital transformation starts in the mind. And then follow what we also advise our business customers to do: Just get started! But don't go it alone. Look for strong partners who can support you in the implementation, from whose experience you can benefit and thus achieve success more quickly. With Deutsche Telekom's DIGITAL X digitization initiative, we have created a platform that can and should do just that. If you will, a partnership-based "support system" through which companies can obtain valuable input on current digitization topics.

Mr. Spreitzer, the first DIGITAL X DIGITAL EDITION featured a controversial speaker. How did Telekom decide to invite whistleblower Edward Snowden?

Spreitzer: With Edward Snowden as our spokesperson, we wanted to show that uncontrollable things that force us to innovate can also have positive aspects. The Corona pandemic forced us to break new ground in a very unpleasant way. As far as digitization is concerned, Corona was virtually a catalyst. Suddenly, everything happened very quickly and digital transformation took place at an unprecedented speed. Even if it's exhausting to move forward at first, in the end you're left with sustainable progress and opportunities that would never have existed without digitization. That's what happened with DIGITAL X. We were forced to switch to a digital format in a matter of weeks. But it opened up opportunities that we wouldn't have had without DIGITAL X DIGITAL EDITION. We have an almost unique opportunity to catch up now in terms of digitization and to tackle things that we would not have thought possible or feasible before.

That's a nice conclusion, Mr. Spreitzer. Thank you very much for the interview.

The grand finale of Digital X 2020 will take place on November 19 and 20 in the form of a highly interesting hybrid event. The details will be announced in the coming weeks. The official page for the event and the registration form can be found at

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Telekom Germany GmbH

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