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Dec
05
2016

The pulse of Latvian startup scene: Week #48

#StartinLatvia raises substantial investment, organizes high-profile tech conference, participates in Slush and more.

Riga hosts technology conference Digital Freedom Festival

The Digital Freedom Festival technology conference took place in Riga on November 28 and 29, bringing together 1,008 participants from 25 countries, among them two presidents, 62 speakers, representatives of 115 startups, 24 investors, 55 journalists, and 53 volunteers.

The conference closed with a pitch competition where two companies emerged victorious: Funderful – a solution for education institutions to manage their fundraising campaigns, and SkenarioLabs, which provides unique technical solutions for building owners, managers and construction industry.

Giraffe360 raises EUR 0.5 million investment

Latvian startup Giraffe360 – world’s best virtual tour technology builder – has raised EUR 0.5 million investment from private Estonian venture capital consortium led by venture capital company Koha Capital, announced the Giraffe360 founder and CEO Mikus Opelts.

It is the highest publicly known seed investment in any Latvian startup this year.

Seven winners of Takeoff grant program announced

Seven winners of the fall competition of the grant program Takeoff (Atspēriens), organized by the Riga City Council and Swedbank, have been announced. The seven have been allotted funding of EUR 81,342 in total for the implementation of their business ideas and development.

Among the recipients of grants are the company AM Locks, which is developing a bicycle lock that no one will want to cut – uSkunk. The company plans to use the funds to cover the cost of setting up a website and shooting a video to advertise the product, as well as trademark registration, employee training, paying the services of a legal advisor and accountant, and office rent.

New peer-to-peer lending platform VIAINVEST enters Latvia

The launch of new peer-to-peer lending platform VIAINVEST in Latvia once again proves the continuous growth and significance of the alternative finance and peer-to-peer lending industry.

VIAINVEST is a peer-to-peer marketplace for both private and legal entities offering to invest into consumer loans originating from non-banking lenders. Unlike other P2P platforms, all loan agreements available for investment within the VIAINVEST platform are secured with a buyback guarantee.

Latvian startup delegation participates in Slush festival

Slush, one of the most prestigious startup festivals, was held in Helsinki on November 30 and December 1. Courtesy fintech company TWINO, a startup delegation from Latvia also attended the event.

The Latvian startup delegation visiting Helsinki included 30 representatives from the following startups: Toneboard, Notakey, Nordigen, Anatomy Next, Dripit.io, WhatTheBus, Poker Art, Sorry as a Service, Swipegateway.com, Walmoo, Qfer, Zoomcharts, and Finy.

Three companies from Latvia – Nordigen , NotaKey and Vividly – participated in the Slush 100 Pitching Competition, and Nordigen advanced as far as the semifinals along with 20 best European startups.