Interview with Peteris Zilgavis, Head of Startups and Innovation and at the EC.
What is your background?
I’m a barrister, with my J.D. from University of Southern California, and a B.A. in political science from UCLA. I started addressing international law issues in several Latvian ministries (environment, foreign affairs) then moved to private law and then to the World Bank, the Council of Europe and finally the European Commission, working in areas of new technologies, policy and the law.
Is it a logical progression to what you do now?
Yes it is. The Digital Single Market and entrepreneurship in this area follow on my work on how policy and regulatory frameworks can adopt and adapt to innovative solutions rapidly while upholding principles of respect for the environment and our citizens’ interests.
What are you working on now? What are your plans for 2017?
Several important initiatives are implementing the European Commission Communication on the Startups and Scaleups Initiative (innovation procurement, regulatory sandboxes, Startup Europe and ICT standards), and Co-Chairing the European Commission’s Task Force on Financial Technology – FinTech.
What will you be talking about at RVS? / Why are you attending?
I’ll be talking about how Startup Europe aims at mission-based networking between Europe’s Startup ecosystems. We don’t have a single Silicon Valley dominating Europe but different cities that are strong in artificial intelligence, Deep Tech, gaming, FinTech, Insurtech etc. As policymakers, we also are conscious of needing to address societal challenges. The aim is to enable Europe’s entrepreneurs and tech to be part of the solution on the basis of an innovation and investment-friendly business climate.
It was a great year for me because I moved to the Startups and Innovation dossier, which I am very motivated by, but it was a year in which we saw that many voters in the World were dissatisfied with the status quo and were looking for answers. I believe that innovation and entrepreneurship can provide some of the opportunities that have been missing so I’m glad to be working with Europe’s startup communities to ensure that the next scaleups come from the EU and that jobs and growth are generated.
Which influencers and websites do you follow to keep up to date with the latest developments?
Too many to make a choice here (and to show favouritism). Always glad to hear about new sources of info.
How can people find out more about what you are working on?
The Startup Europe websites and social media, the European Commission websites and social media and my own Twitter account ( @PZilgalvis ).
Peteris Zilgalvis, J.D.
Head of Unit, Startups and Innovation
Digital Single Market Directorate
Directorate General Communications Networks, Content and Technology
Co-Chair, FinTech Task Force
Anything else you’d like to add / we should have asked?
I’m looking forward to a great event in beautiful Riga, Latvia, where I’m always glad to be!
“State of European Tech – The future is invented in Europe” report will be presented in Brussels by CEPS
“State of European Tech – The future is invented in Europe” report will be presented in Brussels by CEPS
- Tom Wehmeier, Principal & Head of Research at Atomico, wrote the 2016 report which was published at the Slush conference in Helsinki in November
- Startup Europe will highlight the importance of evidence based policy making on startups policy
- This presentation would take place under the frame of the StartUp Europe Awards initiative
One of the most comprehensive reports regarding the current state of the tech scene in Europe will be presented in an event hosted and organised by the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS) on January 31st.
An excellent opportunity to highlight the importance of evidence based policy making on startups policythat will benefit the European institutions work towards startups with validated data.
Commissioned and produced by Atomico, a European-based global venture capital firm, in partnership with Slush, the organisers of the Slush technology conference in Helsinki, Finland, the report outlines three key trends underlying the growing influence and success of the European technology industry:
- Deep tech is thriving and diversifying in Europe: 2016 was a bumper year with $88B in deep tech M&A; more US and Asian tech giants buying up European deep tech companies and tapping into a growing deep tech talent pool.
- New tech hubs are emerging across Europe beyond the existing order of London, Berlin, and Stockholm. The report suggests that Munich, Zurich, Lisbon, Madrid, and Copenhagen will be ones to watch over the coming years. Paris is starting to seriously challenge London and Berlin in number of VC-financed deals and deal volume.
- Traditional industries are awakening to tech: two thirds of Europe’s largest corporates by market cap have made a direct investment in tech companies while one third has acquired a tech company since the beginning of 2015.
This is the second year in a row that Slush and Atomico have produced their data-driven look inside the European tech ecosystem, with this year’s report including data from LinkedIn, Meetup, Stack Overflow, Dealroom.co, and the London Stock Exchange.
The presentation of the report “State of European Tech – The future is invented in Europe” is hosted and organised by the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS) leading think tank and forum for debate on EU affairs, with the support of Finnova Foundation and StartUp Europe (DG CONNECT), under the frame of StartUp Europe Awards.
StartUp Europe Awards (www.startupeuropeawards.com) is promoted by the European Commission and supported by the President of the Committee of the Regions, several members of the European Parliament as Ambassadors and it is implemented by Finnova Foundation in collaboration with Startup Europe.
The objectives of StartUp Europe Awards (SEUA) are to identify local role models in each ecosystem of startups across Europe and to create an alliance of organizations supporting innovation and entrepreneurship.
AGENDA – JANUARY 31st
Conference Room.CEPS. Place du Congrès 1. B-1000 Brussels
Pre-registration is required in the following link.
First ‘Challenge the Car of the Future’ Session
On January 12th 2016, at Lazio Innova, TWIST project partner, the first mentorship session of the ‘Challenge the Car of the Future’ program took place. The program was launched by Lazio Innova and Euro Engineering.
With 59 offices in Europe, Euro Engineering operates as an international engineering company for worldwide clients. As a strategic partner, Euro Engineering offers global project support while guaranteeing a consistent level of service.
Six startups are participating to the mentorship program for the development of solutions for automotive sector that will be proposed by Euro Engineering to European clients. The winner of the challenge will be announced during the Startup Europe Week.
Tata, Enabling Youth Entrepreneurship Across Europe
- How does your local university support the startup ecosystem? How involved are they?
- Could institutions do more to integrate with their local startup scene?
- How can startups and entrepreneurs better support and work with universities to help foster Student Entrepreneur’s ambitions?
- How can we achieve all of this?
NACUE, one of the partners of MY-WAY project, invites you to an evening panel discussion on 12th January 2017, which aims to bring together parliamentarians, entrepreneurs and industry experts to explore what can be done to improve the startup ecosystem across Europe, in order for the next generation of entrepreneurs to succeed.
The panel discussion will include topics such as the role of universities in the startup ecosystem, startup support available for Europe’s next generation and the key themes in building a sustainable ecosystem of support.
Panelists will include:
- Anne-Wil Lucas, Startup Delta
- Michel Arends, CEO of Team Academy
- Ellen Bark-Lindhout, Founder of Collider
- Aster van Laere, Co Founder of Blend: Disruptive Consulting
- The panel will be chaired by Timothy Barnes, Founder of The RainGods.
The evening will also invite student entrepreneurs to give elevator pitches, with the winner being voted by the audience and winning a prize from Tata.
They want this event to help start important conversations about where the support system for student entrepreneurs can go next and hope that you can join them!
For more information and to book your place, please visit: http://bit.ly/TataYE17
2 years of WELCOME – and now the project is drawing to a close
This was an intense journey across Europe, bringing startups to meet new ecosystems, organising and taking part in the biggest tech events in the continent and so much more.
One way to look at the 2 years past is to look at our numbers (click for high resolution!):
Looking back, it felt we were everywhere at the same time!
We were in more than 18 of the most important startup events around Europe, either through one-shot activities like Europass programme (Pioneers Vienna, IoT World Dublin, Slush Helsinki, Tech Open Air Berlin, etc) or with our two batches of the Roadshow that visited WELCOME’s ecosystems: Madrid, Salamanca, Berlin, Milan and Dublin (South Summit, Web Summit, Uprise Festival, Seeds & Chips, …).
We’re very proud to have gathered such an impressive group of startups – check them out at our competition winners page and ask for our pitchdeck!
We were organising not only activities for startups, but for accelerators, universities, policy makers and all other ecosystem builders. Throughout these 2 years we also carried out initiatives such Accelerator Assembly, Startup Europe Comes to Universities, and Startup Europe Nations.
Now that the project is over, we look at what’s next in the horizon: new projects, new initiatives! Stay connected with the Startup Europe initiative to be part of this future!
EUROPEAN DIGITAL FORUM
The European Digital Forum is the think tank arm of the Startup Europe initiative. Fully independent, it combines first-rate research with cutting-edge collaborative tools and a high-powered community of startups, scale ups, policymakers and digital aficionados in a powerful cocktail that defines the cutting edge of Europe’s digital agenda. In just over two years, it has produced seven publications, two annual editions of the European Digital City Index and engaged more than 2000 citizens, policymakers, startup leaders and think tankers in its high-level debates. Find out more at www.europeandigitalforum.eu.
The EDFx project is structured around six specific objectives:
Objective 1: The promotion of tech/web entrepreneurship by organising and hosting events and serving as venues for tech entrepreneurs, other businesses and policymakers. These are both stand-alone occasions and sessions within the programmes of major tech/web conferences. The EDF aims to add the all-important aspect of public policy to the discussions and to facilitate cross-fertilisation between the EDF community and that of the leading tech forum, leading to greater synergy, impact and reach. The EDFx project successfully hosted six high-level summits:
- Two breakout sessions at the Startup Europe Summit in Berlin, February 2015
- The 2015 European Digital Forum in Brussels, keynoted by European Commission Vice-President Andrus Ansip, June 2015
- The European Startup Forum at ICT 2015, opened by European Commission Günther Oettinger, in Lisbon, October 2015
- The European Scale-up Day at CeBIT, keynoted by European Commission Günther Oettinger, March 2016
- The Scale Up Manifesto session at the Digital Assembly in Bratislava, September 2016
- The 2016 European Digital Forum in Brussels, keynoted by European Commissioner Carlos Moedas, November 2016
Objective 2: Conducting innovative policy-oriented research. The EDFx produced two annual editions of the European Digital City Index to allow stakeholders to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the startup ecosystems in different cities, as well as the cities’ digital readiness.
- The European Digital City Index (EDCi) describes how well different European cities support digital entrepreneurship.For startups and scale-ups, it provides information about the strengths and weaknesses of local ecosystems, allowing them to plan accordingly and consider where they may need to devote more resources.
- For policy makers aiming to encourage digital entrepreneurship in their own city, the Index helps to identify existing and promising hubs of activity, in order to learn from their practices. Additionally, it allows benchmarking of performance against other European hubs, and helps identify which policy areas to prioritise.
Objective 3: Spreading the best practices of policies stimulating web entrepreneurship by creating the best practices repository. This objective stems from the Startup Manifesto (action 21) that reads, “to provide a resource where local and national governments can share the best ‘hacks’ they found to achieve immediate impact.” EDFx aims to collect and analyse examples of policy initiatives across the globe aimed at facilitating web/tech entrepreneurship and supporting better innovation ecosystems.
- While national policy is vital, we must remember that entrepreneurs are also affected by their local environment. Sub-national bodies like chambers of commerce, cluster managers, councils and local regulators – as well as universities and big business – can all influence entrepreneurs’ decisions and affect the framework within which startups thrive or die.The idea bank is therefore intended specifically to help local policymakers and influencers create better conditions for entrepreneurship at the regional or city level. Intended as a ‘bank of ideas’, it draws together examples from all over the world of policies and initiatives that support startups, especially digital startups, in an effort to provide inspiration and options to European policymakers.
- Policies are grouped together under the 10 themes used in the European Digital City Index (EDCi) – which this guide is intended to complement – together with an 11th, cross-cutting theme relating to the process of policymaking. It concludes with some tools to assist in choosing, developing and implementing these policies.
Objective 4: Building and maintaining a vibrant network of leading-edge thinkers, inspirational entrepreneurs, digital startups, thought leaders, captains of industry, policymakers and other stakeholders. The diversity of this community and high professionalism of its members is its key assets, enabling cross-fertilisation of expertise and designing new solutions and models to drive Europe’s digital economy forward.
- The EDFx project has engaged more than 2000 citizens, policymakers, startup leaders and think tankers.
Objective 5: An active and professional dissemination and communication campaign will help inform a wide array of stakeholders, including tech entrepreneurs, policymakers and other interested and relevant parties.
- The EDFx project energised and engaged the groups typically associated with tech/web entrepreneurship – founders, investors, corporate leaders and policymakers with a digital portfolio, tech press – but also reached to other groups, typically not associated with web/tech entrepreneurship: mainstream policymakers, economists, and non-tech media.
- Up to 2,000 people and organisations follow the European Digital Forum on Twitter.
Objective 6: EDFx is to be constructively and pro-actively involved in policy dialogue, contributing its expertise in on-going discussions.
- It provided policy support and monitoring in the field of web/tech entrepreneurs and elevated the voice of tech entrepreneurs in policy debates. In particular, it monitored the progress of the Startup Manifesto by using an innovative, one-of-its-kind visualisation tool – the Startup Manifesto Policy Tracker. This tool provided an easy-to-understand overview of how far each EU member state is implementing the different actions put forward. This has the potential to inform a wider group of people, but it also has the likely effect of initiating a healthy competition between EU member states to improve their relative ranking.
- This monitoring and analysis was presented in The 2016 Startup Nation Scoreboard.
- In September 2016, the European Digital Forum launched the Scale Up Europe Manifesto. In 2016, European Commissioner Günther Oettinger spoke passionately to a group of leading startups at CeBIT, the global event for digital business, in Hannover, Germany. “Tell me what I need to do to help startups to scale up in Europe and together we will do it.” he said, his eyes visibly bright as he tossed out the challenge. The result is The Scale Up Manifesto, a 49-point roadmap which draws from the unique insights of dozens of leading European startup associations and successful entrepreneurs. The measures are divided into six headings: 1) complete the single market, 2) mobilise capital, 3) activate talent, 4) power innovation, 5) broaden education and 6) monitor, measure and evaluate.
Project DIGISTART – An overview
The project DIGISTART is supporting European-Wide digital ecosystems through a set of coordinated activities targeting Lisbon and Malmo. It also harnesses the capabilities of the F6S for providing online support to startups. The Lisbon Ecosystem is supported by UNIDEMI and BETA-i. UNIDEMI, A research centre at the Faculdade de Ciencias e Tecnologies, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, initiated activities to provide greater access to the innovation ecosystem for students. That includes early stage mentorship, awareness creation, launching of the Startup Forum, a formal Entrepreneurship Course and an online MOOC. During the project, some research work has been done that can provide greater insights on how Innovation Ecosystems have benefitted Startups. Moreover, DIGISTART collaborated with other European funded project (eg. MY-WAY, Scaleup, LIFE, Welcome) to enable individuals/university students and startups to connect as well as support and benefit from the dynamic circulation of European ecosystems for web entrepreneurs.
One of the primary objectives of DIGISTART project has been bring a culture of Entrepreneurship into the University. Entrepreneurial activity within the University is being seen as a key indicator of the University’s Ranking. A dynamic and vibrant entrepreneurial culture creates students that are confident to face the new economy which is based on niche, nimble and agile startups. DIGISTART helped students to identify their excitement and provide them some kind of coaching support which help them look clearly at the bigger picture.
DIGISTART collaborated in organizingtwiceFCT entrepreneurship courses with 1000 students, at Universidade Nova de Lisboa. The course was designed to train aspiring students from all backgrounds. It has now become an annual event. This course was designed to help students evaluate the business skills and commitment necessary to successfully operate an entrepreneurial venture and review the challenges and rewards of entrepreneurship. Students learned about themselves, their decisions, and their goals to determine how entrepreneurship can play a role in their lives.
Secondly,a course lasting a full academic semester with 3 ECTS was conducted twice by UNIDEMI called Digital Business Ecosystems. It covered in depth understanding of how the Internet is transforming business rules,companies and collaborative networks, understanding digital business models, understanding how to develop digital business and Internet-based Startups, and finally understandinghow to finance and manage a digital business.
The project organized many interesting workshops and training sessions. Bringing Entrepreneurship Culture to the Universities was a successful example of international workshop organized at October 2015 at Universidade Nova de Lisboa.This workshop was designed to get together a set of speakers with a wide range of experiences to discuss best practices, challenge solutions and bring in inspirational examples on how to nurture entrepreneurship culture at universities. Across the world, Universities are turning to the challenge of not only providing high quality education for tomorrow’s workforce, research and development to enhance knowledge, but also imparting the entrepreneurship skills vital for the empowering students to create their own startups. The workshop was targeted primarily to researchers, educators, university professors, and students.
DIGISTART and MY-WAY joined efforts to create We Start Lisbon, the European conference for students and young web entrepreneur held at October 2016 at Universidade Nova de Lisboa. n exciting and quite interactive event which set out to inspire and teach students regarding entrepreneurship.
Overall, during the project 5 courses were conducted and more than 2000 students benefited from the courses. 8 training sessions happened. 2 conferences and 3 workshops were organized. Many networking activities, meet-ups, business development sessions happened. Around 140 startups were mentored and facilitated during the project activities. 5 Master theses completed and 2 scientific papers already published.
Startup Europe after 2 years!
Startup Europe has reached the two year mark. check out how our projects have been doing!
Together we have achieved some incredible things and truly boosted the European startup ecosystem, connecting people and helping startups to grow and thrive in Europe.
Highlights of Startup Europe
The Startup Europe projects have collectively connected the cities of Berlin, Madrid, Dublin, Rome, Lille, Warsaw, Brussels, Milan and many more!
An incredible +700 startups have participated in Startup Europe programmes, which have raised more than 200m€ in total.
One of Startup Europe’s strong points has been the sheer number of events that we have organised to create connections and help startups grow across Europe: over 300 events in two years.
More than just conferences, the Startup Europe projects have helped startups at these events to work through their tough spots and achieve their goals. Over 115 workshops, courses, hackathons, bootcamps and training sessions have been held for startups all over Europe, supporting them in every stage of growth. In particular, we have helped startups with that well-known growing pain- learning how to pitch and epitch. Over 240 epitching support sessions were organised to give startups the training they needed and to turn that 2 minutes with an investor into a golden opportunity.
For those startups that were ready to take the next step, the Startup Europe projects supported over 1300 pitches to business angels and corporates.
In fact, Startup Europe also organised well-thought-out matchmaking meetings between startups and investors, over 500 individual matchmakings between startups and investors all over Europe. Many were more than just boardroom conversations, in fact they were quite unique and ingenious (see WELCOME project’s meeting investors in cars post!).
Startup Europe also saw +160 startups join Startup Scaleup’s acceleration programme, in two waves of programmes.
One of the four key objectives of Startup Europe has been to help startups internationalise– and boy have we crossed oceans with you! From preparatory internationalisation sessions to giving startups the support they need to land in new ecosystems, Startup Europe has also crossed the atlantic with European startups to Silicon Valley. Two missions to Silicon Valley saw European startups travel to the USA to meet local giants like Google, get to know the ecosystem and test out the waters in the world’s most famous startup hub.
On an important note, one topic that many people are keen to see improved in Europe is the environment for women entrepreneurs. WeHubs, one of the Startup Europe projects, aimed to help women connect and gain the support and resources they need to become successful entrepreneurs, no matter where in Europe they are. WeHubs facilitated the creation of 34 women’s entrepreneur organisations, organised 20 mentors and registered over 330 female entrepreneurs.
Startup Europe also put efforts into encouraging the next generation of entrepreneurs, specifically targeting students. Startup Europe Comes to Universities (SEC2U) saw it’s first year, in which more than 35 universities held entrepreneurships events for their students across 18 countries. The network is already accepting expressions of interest from Universities for next year- take a look here.
A fair bit of research has also been conducted throughout the project, with over 25 publications being published on Europe’s startup and entrepreneurial environment.
Finally, our following on social media demonstrates the real impact of the Startup Europe initiative – 11,400 members in our Facebook community and 20,000 followers on twitter (13,000 tweets!).
CALL TO ACTION: if you have taken part in Startup Europe projects over those 2 years, make sure you fill out this Google Form, selected startups will be announced during the ‘Startup Europe After 2 Years conference’ in Brussels on 2nd February 2017. Please fill out the form by 20th January 2017. For more info take a look here.
It has been a blast and we aim to keep this website updated with the most recent startup news and activities going on in Europe- keep checking our news and blog sections in the future!
Attend National Roadshow BioInItaly Investment Forum with TWIST!
Have the chance to pitch at BioInItaly Investment Forum with Startup Europe project, TWIST project!
One of the partners of TWIST project, Lazio Innova, is a key local partner in Rome of the National Roadshow BioInItaly Investment Forum, the event organized by Assobiotec in collaboration with Intesa Sanpaolo Start-Up Initiative that will take place in Rome next January 18th 2017.
In Rome at each stage of the roadshow, a jury of experts will select the Best Presentation in Healthcare Biotech / Biomedical.
The projects and / or start-ups that will be awarded have the opportunity to enter the boot-camp that will be held in Milan at the headquarters of Fondazione Filarete- Intesa San Paolo on 27 and 28 February and will pitch at the BioInItaly Investment Forum & Intesa Sanpaolo Start-Up Initiative 29 and 30 March 2017 in Milan .
Applicants wishing to take part in this initiative must meet the following requirements:
• Contestants must present a company or project that fits within the target biotech and nanobiotech tracks of Red Biotech and Green & White Biotech. It is not required for the applicants’ project to refer to an incorporated company.
• International applications are welcome – please be aware that at least 50% of the projects admitted to Phase 2 must be Italian or planning to open up a main office in Italy within 2017.
• Contestants must indicate their fund raising objectives and financial needs (the typical equity ask range for our investment forums is between € 200K and € 3M)
• Participants from previous editions will be considered only if they can demonstrate a significant evolution in their business plan or market validation.
1-2-1 session: “Development of innovative management system as a solution for livestock sector”
10.00 – 15.00
Development of innovative management system as a solution for livestock sector.
One of the defined problems of livestock sector is the lack of a universal management system.
The proper course of action and technological development in the livestock sector, seems to be development of innovative management system that integrates all stakeholders.
Hipra Poland, Technical Advisor – Livestock
15.00 – 16.00
Questions & Answers
Hipra Poland, Technical Advisor – Livestock
Rafal Trukan is an expert in dealing with issues in the areas of business, and veterinary medicine. Extensive experience in planning and implementing business plans and promotional budgets, as well as the link with the environment veterinary allowed for the successful conduct many training marketing and sales techniques and tactics in the field.
As an advisor repeatedly dealt with the development and implementation of new, will be widely popular products on the market (such as Marbox, Cevaxel RTU, Pride Delta, Enzaprost, Coxevac, Hydracev, Spirovet, SYNCROSTIM, Velactis, Multishield DC, Eprecis inj.).