Startup Europe project Welcome takes startups to Uprise Festival, Dublin!

Eight top early stage startups from across Europe travelled to Dublin last week to attend Uprise Festival. These startups are part of Startup Europe project Welcome’s  ‘EU Roadshow’, where selected startups attend various events across Europe and spend 3 weeks in Silicon Valley.

Dublin was the final event for these startups who have visited Silicon Valley, Berlin & Milan earlier in the year and South Summit in Madrid earlier this month.

The trip to Uprise began with the official pre-event, Startup Grind which took place in Dublin’s historic city hall. Startup Grind began with a short introduction from David Scanlon who has worked with startups in Dublin in many roles and is currently Venture Investment Leader with NDRC. David then introduced Sean Blanchfield.

Sean Blanchfield is CEO and co-founder of PageFair, the company at the forefront of the digital adblocking debate. He co-founded his first business, Phorest, while still an undergrad at TCD, exiting in an MBO 2 years later. In 2003, he dropped out of a PhD to co-found DemonWare.

DemonWare created P2P technology for video games, and helped drive the mainstream popularisation of multiplayer video gaming until its acquisition by Activision Blizzard in 2007.

Today, PageFair has been integrated on over 5000 websites, and is used by many leading international publishing brands. Sean is a well-known figure in Irish technology, and is a frequent speaker, panelist, columnist, and occasional mentor and investor.

Sean gave a very interesting talk about his journey in founding these companies and the lessons he has learned along the way. This talk was followed by networking during which the startups got to meet people from the local startup ecosystem.

Next morning the startups arrived at the Uprise Festival in the RDS for an early appointment with 4 mentors from Google. These mentors specialised in areas such as search quality, marketing, export and tools development and the startups gained a lot from these sessions.


Next up was a matchmaking session organised by Welcome partners Mind the Bridge and DCU Ryan Academy.  Startups were matched with corporates and investors for quick, intensive meetings to pitch their startups (read more here!).




Corporates and investors included:

  • Brian Quinn – Intel
  • Joe Perrott – PCH
  • David Bowles – Delta Partners VC
  • Stefano Francavilla – Growing Capital
  • Ian Lucy – Lucey Fund

Three of the startups exhibited at Uprise, Solo, Toursnapp and Link Fish and reported great interest in their booths.

Following an afternoon of networking, talks and workshopsat Uprise, the startups headed to the LaunchBox incubator for an afterparty with local Dublin startups.

The trip to Dublin was very successful with great feedback from the startups.

The startups were:

  • GirlCrew (Dublin) a global community for women
  • Link.Fish (Berlin) a bookmark manager that allows people to work with the information behind URLs
  • Replex (Berlin) a service for IT teams that enables them collecting critical information on all infrastructure assets both physical and virtual
  • Solo (Milan) a virtual POS that lets merchants accept credit and debit card payments
  • SwiftComply (Dublin)a platform solution for Fat, Oil and Grease compliance in the food service industry
  • TourSnapp (Berlin)a service that applies the concept of Smart cities to cultural tourism
  • Up to Seven (Madrid) a social network that enables foodies to share recipes and suggestions
  • CloudRoom (Madrid) a Cloud-Based Learning Platform that enable the integration of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) into the corporate world

 What they said

What the startups enjoyed most about this event:

Talking with the people that came to the stand!

All the chances to have 1-on-1 meetings 

What was most helpful for the startups:

People loved the idea!

The feedback that I received!


WELCOME is a project under the Startup Europe initiative that aims to build a pan-European tech startup ecosystem. To that end, Welcome links startups from five vibrant EU ecosystems — Berlin, Dublin, Madrid, Milan and Salamanca, to customers, VCs, business angels, corporates, mentors and other startups. The project targets aspiring entrepreneurs as well as early and late stage startups with activities enabling them to grow across borders and access the right combination of finance while helping corporates identify the best talents.

This competition is part of Welcome’s Europass Programme


Our festival was founded by Paul O’Connell an Irishman living in Amsterdam. Through his stubbornness and focus we are moving into our fourth festival to help young companies grow even faster.

UPRISE is the largest startup festival in Europe. We focus on growth and visibility for Startup Talent. Connect with universities, companies and the public in our one day festival. In over 1 year we have brought 15,000 visitors to talk, connect and invest in young vibrant companies from our base in Amsterdam. Now in October 2016 we base from Dublin bringing Europe to this great city.