Software & Platform Business

The digital transformation is in full swing – are you on board? Fraunhofer IESE supports you in the development and implementation of digital business models, from digital services via digital ecosystems to platforms for your digital business.

Solutions for your digital business models and software in digital ecosystems

Platform Business

Digital ecosystems & platform economy – Fraunhofer IESE supports your company in the development of digital business models to enable you to survive in the digital transformation.

On the road to the digital future, processes are getting digitalized, automated, and networked. Information systems and software on mobile devices and on the "Internet of Things" control these processes and workflows. This leads to the emergence of digital ecosystems that are available and can be experienced at all times and almost anywhere, and which trigger the establishment of novel types of digital business models.

Our goal is to ensure the long-term success of your business through digital revenues. We assist you in the development of your digital business model with our leading innovative methods. This means that our experts will accompany you from ideation via the concept to the prototype implementation of a digital service, a digital ecosystem, or a platform.

Software Business

Software & Systems Engineering – Fraunhofer IESE offers leading-edge research and development services in the area of information systems and mobile systems.

Information systems and mobile systems permeate our daily lives in many areas. In the future, company-internal systems such as ERP, CRM, ICIS, accounting and billing systems will not only provide support for and automation of business processes and daily processing of millions of transactions, but will also be networked with and interact with other system classes, such as Social Media, eCommerce, FinTech, systems in vehicles and in other companies – also from other industries. This will result in better, more widely available, data-based, and personalized services for customers and users.

What does Fraunhofer IESE offer that enables you to benefit from digital ecosystems and the digital transformation?

With our three service areas, you will successfully master the challenges of the digital transformation.


Innovation & Strategy

  • Fraunhofer is your incubator and your workshop: We accompany your digitalization projects and innovative product developments from ideation to rapid prototyping in our Innovation Labs with guaranteed qualities such as Security, Safety, Privacy, and User Experience.
  • We design your digital ecosystem for you and with you, so that you can use new digital business models to secure your company’s long-term success also with digital revenues.
  • Together with you, we develop a vision, a goal, and a migration path for the modernization of legacy systems in order to make them fit for the future and for use by younger generations.


Diagnostics & Optimization

  • Fraunhofer optimizes your IT and software processes for software and application development and for the continually increasing requirements of users and customers in terms of competitive productivity, quality, regulatory requirements, as well as fitness for the digital transformation.  
  • We revise your software architectures to enable them to master future challenges regarding networking in digital ecosystems, quality, longevity, and extensibility.
  • We improve the User Experience of the user end points for your digital services and platforms – your customers will love using your products or working with your software!


Engineering Support

  • Fraunhofer helps you design your software and services – from the requirements via the architecture to the user interface and the right test cases – in order to ensure right from the start that the complexity of ecosystems and digital services remains manageable.
  • We provide operational support for the modernization of your software systems, from the user interface via the architecture to the code and the exchange of implementation technologies in accordance with the developed goal and the defined migration path.


Have we aroused your interest? Get in contact with us! We will be glad to discuss your individual challenges with you and design a solution based on our competencies.

Continuing Education at Fraunhofer IESE

Seminars & Coaching

We offer seminars on many topics, e.g., in the areas of Requirements Engineering, Software Architecture, Data Science. Or we can tailor an individual seminar for you! Contact us. 

Fraunhofer IESE-Blog [in German]

Digital Financing

In addition to the development of digital business models, the integration of services and IoT objects is also part of the digital transformation. Our blog post [German only] sketches an innovative scenario.



Is your software up to date?

Software modernization is important to keep up with progress and with competitors. Get an overview of typical situations and challenges.

Selected Projects



In the project TrUSD, Fraunhofer IESE is conducting research together with its project partners on concepts and tools for practice-oriented employee data privacy.



In the Smart Farming project DEMETER, Fraunhofer IESE is responsible for the automated analysis of data quality in order to support farmers in the long term in gaining new knowledge from their data.


Debeka Innovation Center

Fraunhofer IESE supported the Debeka Innovation Center in evaluating the user feedback on its performance app with CrowdRE and automated analyses.


Using Big Data to Improve Business Processes

The rapid advances in information technology (IT) have a number of effects on global business. One of these effects is that a large amount and variety of measurement data is produced at great speed. The availability of such “Big Data” creates a number of new opportunities for business but also entails numerous entirely new challenges.


Caruso: A Digital Ecosystem

Caruso GmbH developed its open and neutral data and service marketplace for the Automotive Aftermarket with the support of Fraunhofer IESE.

As a neutral and strategic technology partner, we helped to structure the ecosystem systematically and to gradually develop the platform as the core of digital ecosystems.


SECCRIT: SEcure Cloud computing for CRitical infrastructure IT

Requirements on the Cloud, such as high levels of availability, resilience, and IT security, are indispensable for the use of Cloud technologies in the area of critical infrastructures, as is the guarantee that these will actually be delivered. However, the guaranteed implementation of these requirements continues to present a challenge.


Datev eG

With DATEV e.G. from Nuremberg, we are currently working on the design and development of software solutions for tax firms, lawyers and auditors based on digital ecosystems.


Fujitsu EST: Sustaining Innovation in Product Development

As an international subsidiary of Fujitsu’s technology organization, Fujitsu EST undertakes core software product management and development activities, forming an important bridge between the company’s technology groups and its international customers and partners.



BASF SE – with revenues of more than 70 billion euros and over 110,000 employees worldwide – is the largest chemical company in the world. Software and IT services are an integral part of the support of internal and external business processes at BASF.


Cosmos Direkt Gruppe (Cosmos Finanzservice GmbH)

For our customer Cosmos, we analyzed the IT infrastructure and developed a sustainable target IT infrastructure – combining requirements from both business and IT – integrated into one big picture.


ECOPETROL S.A., Colombia

For our customer ECOPETROL S.A. in Colombia, we aligned the company’s strategy and business goals with IT- and software-related activities using our proven GQM+Strategies® method. This led to increased transparency of goals, strategies, and measurement data across the organization, clarification of the value contributed by IT and software development in terms of the organization’s business goals, more objective decision-making, and other benefits.


Finanz Informatik GmbH & Co.KG

For our customer FinanzInformatik, we conducted a series of usability tests, thereby enabling them to make a decision about which screen representation and graphical user interface design is best suited with regard to efficiency, effectiveness, and correctness of information in a bank clerk’s daily work with customers.


Fujitsu Labs, Japan

Since 2006, Fraunhofer IESE and Fujitsu Labs have been collaborating in joint research and technology transfer projects. This collaboration started in the area of requirements engineering, especially in the areas of requirements specifications, non-functional requirements, requirements reviews, and traceability of requirements. In 2010, the collaboration was extended to include the topics of architecture, usability & user experience, as well as requirements elicitation. Fujitsu Labs recently announced that the tailored Fraunhofer IESE methodologies had been transferred successfully to the Fujitsu business units by Fujitsu Labs.


Lufthansa Systems AG

We supported our customer Lufthansa Systems AG in preparing end-to-end development of mobile apps as a supplement to existing products. Based on an example mobile app, a process was defined and tested from a feature to an executable prototype. In the prototype development, the UI and the interaction design as well as the architecture design were primarily developed by Fraunhofer IESE experts, while the implementation of the prototype could be performed by a group of student developers, as in other comparable customer projects of Fraunhofer IESE. In 2011, Fraunhofer IESE and Lufthansa Systems continued their development regarding mobile apps.


Lufthansa AG

We supported our customer Lufthansa AG in selecting a new technology for one of their operative systems based on our competence in architecture-centric engineering.



Catastrophes or major disasters frequently lead to extreme strains on the rescue units and security forces in charge. As a partner in an interdisciplinary project consortium, Fraunhofer IESE was tasked with performing requirements engineering. To elicit the requirements on the platform to be designed, numerous public safety institutions (e.g., police, fire department, Federal Agency for Technical Relief, etc.) had to be analyzed in terms of their internal organization, taking into account their respective security and non-disclosure aspects, while at the same time maintaining confidentiality regarding certain aspects of these institutions.

You may also be interested in these posts on the Fraunhofer IESE Blog.

Please note that the following posts are only available in German:

In the context of the digital transformation, more and more data including personal data is being processed. Since May 2018, the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has been in force in the EU. Our series of four posts on the Fraunhofer IESE Blog provides background information and practical tips and addresses the importance of the GDPR for digital ecosystems and digital business models.

Blog Post: “Digital Ecosystems and Platform economy” [in German]


Find out more about the new responsibility resulting from the GDPR as well as about the economic opportunities arising from it in this interview about GDPR.

Blog Post: “The GDPR: New Responsibility – New Opportunities” [in German]


One of the Fraunhofer flagship projects in the area of Digital Ecosystems and Platform Economy is the cooperation with CARUSO dataplace. In this exciting blog post, you can learn more about the CARUSO Go-Live event, which took place in November 2017 already. Since then, CARUSO dataplace has been running with increasing success. 

Blog Post: “Caruso Go-live – The Networking Platform” [in German]