It’s hard to stand out when you’re an entrepreneur. So you convince yourself to go out and attend events to promote your project as soon as you’ve got an idea. It starts with bootcamps and hackathons organized by local accelerators and business schools.
At some point, you begin to attend international conferences and professional fairs but nobody really trained you for that and you end up losing your time and, worst of all, your money.
You only wanted to build a useful product and solve customer needs, right? Now you’re competing not only with other startups for a piece of the market share but also for attention at events.
I took part in more than 50 professional events during my five years organizing international conferences and I’ve seen firsthand why startups struggle and what they need to do to successfully navigate this crowded and complex game.
Building an alliance of Tech events
Out of this experience, I realized with a group of event professionals that we could help startups grow internationally by attending the right event, at the right time. This is why we launched Startup Sesame, the global network of Tech events in Europe.
Collaboration between events has been in the organizers’ minds for several years already but it wasn’t until last year at Challengers in Barcelona that this initiative came to life.
At first, it looked like a joke. But we got serious about it and managed to launch our first call for entries in September 2015 with 6 partner events. The response was above expectations with 80 applications from 28 countries.
Obviously, this is a young industry and creating a new category is a daunting challenge. But we rely on a pool of mentors to make it happen. They are the ones who know how entrepreneurs can better their pitch for conferences or master the delicate art of B2B networking. We are so grateful to them and we’re thrilled to announce the latest additions to Startup Sesame’s lineup of experts, Dan Taylor and Sophie Goossens.
Today, we have 10 partner events in 8 cities and we’re at a turning point with our second call for entries coming to an end in March 31st (you can still apply here).
A growing number of events is also willing to join Startup Sesame and we’re doing our best to address their requests. If you’re interested in joining us, please fill in the following form.
We expect to be in all major cities of Europe by end of 2016 thanks to our current partner events and those joining us very soon. By providing time and resources to this initiative, Tech events are accelerating the rise of the digital single market in Europe.
Partnering with Atomico
Today we’re freaking out and overwhelmed by what’s yet to come. It is a very special day for us as we are unveiling an exciting collaboration with Atomico, London based international technology investment company.
With this new partnership, the companies selected by Startup Sesame will get, among other perks, the opportunity to pitch and get valuable feedback on their product or services from Atomico’s investment team before heading out to Startup Sesame partner events throughout Europe.
This collaboration will enable our startups to better their pitches, make precious connexions and prepare for the Tech events they will be attending this coming season. We all know it is better to be challenged before an event and arrive totally prepared than during that event.
Shari Doherty, Partner, Communications at Atomico said the following about joining Startup Sesame:
Startup Sesame helps fast growing European startups navigate the annual event circuit in Europe to accelerate their growth and development of powerful international networks. In our continued efforts to help unlock more of Europe’s potential by building closer links between our tech hubs, Atomico is proud to partner with Startup Sesame.
Advocating for entrepreneurship in Europe
It’s been crazy to witness the amazing response of accelerators and startup ecosystems across the continent. Over 50 organizations have shared our call for entries among their network to help entrepreneurs thrive in Europe.
We’re making tons of new friends and we can’t mention all of them here.
But I’d like to highlight the work of Allied for Startups, a global network of startups, entrepreneurs, VCs, and advocacy organizations, working together to create a worldwide consensus on policies that can positively impact startups and grow digital entrepreneurship and digital economy at large.
Accelerators and incubators such as Startup Sauna, Startup Wise Guys, Techstars, Wayra, Startup Reykjavik, H-Farm, hub:raum, Rockstart Accelerator, L’Accélérateur, 500 Nordics, Beta-I, Startup Pirates, OpenAxel, Startup Bootcamp, Tetuan Valley, Sting Accelerator, Welcome Europe, Impact Accelerator, and many more, have presented our project to their portfolio and alumni.
One more thing…
There is no science for Tech events yet but with your help and constant feedback we’re building something close to it.
If you haven’t seen it yet, check out eventologist.tech and give a try to the first rating app for Tech events.
Eventologist allows you to review anonymously some of the best Tech events in the world. By using a live ranking system, the app lets you know which events are the most popular today.
You can even win a free ticket to your favorite event if you’re lucky 🙂
We’re running our call for entries until March 31st.
What do you think of our project(s)? Are we missing anything?
Please leave your comments below, on Facebook or Twitter.
We’d love to get your feedback.