The TechChill conference – one of the largest start-up conferences in the region – has concluded. 1,100 guests from 26 countries around the world participated in the event. At the event’s closing ceremony, several Latvian start-ups were invited to represent the country at the Startup Europe Awards in Brussels.
This was the fifth edition of the annual TechChill conference, which gathered its largest ever number of participants. Furthermore, this year the conference, including all of its associated events, was held over 3 days. Overall, 56 speakers took the stage at this year’s conference –the developers of various start-ups from around the world, as well as business representatives and technology experts. The organizers also calculate that around 200 startups participated in the event, which together with 60 investors organized around 300 individual meetings.
During the event’s 'pitch competition', the only participant from Latvia 'Finch' was not selected as the winner, as the Estonian startup 'SprayPrinter' triumphed and won the grand prize – a trip to Silicon Valley.
Meanwhile, six Latvian startups triumphed in their respective categories in the national competition of the 'Startup Europe Awards 2016' (SEUA). This is a new initiative, frequently called "the Eurovision for startups" – a forum where start-up leaders from EU member states will have the opportunity to come together and tackle currentstart-up related matters on the European level.The national jury was made up of organizations involved in the Latvian startup environment - the Latvian Startup Association 'Startin.LV', the Latvian Association of Public Relations Professionals, the 'TechHubRīga' co-working space for new startups, the 'Latvian Business Angel Network' (LatBan) and the Latvian startup eco-system platform 'Labs of Latvia'. All of the contestants were evaluated for their achievements the past year by the jury based on their expert knowledge of the startup sector in Latvia.
Winners by group:
- creative industry sector - Mozello
- financial technology sector - Nordigen
- green technology sector - Conelum
- health technology sector - Anatomy Next
- ICT sector - Notakey
- smart cities sector - Rention
Meanwhile, the Latvian Association of Public Relations Professionals put forward a special award –recognition for achievements in public relations, which was won by 4SmartStreets.
The SEUA also recognized three on-line media outlets for their coverage of startup activities in Latvia – the Labs of Latvia and LSM.lv portals, as well as the technology bloggers Kursos.lv, who all were active in ensuring a wider audience for Latvia’s creative ideas and activities.