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Top 10 events for Startups in Europe you can’t miss in 2019

Piotr Juszczak

02/01/2019 6 min read

Being a Startup Geek isn’t easy when there are so many great events to attend. But is it worth booking a bus or plane, setting some time in your calendar and visiting various kinds of meetups for startup founders? Whether you’re an enthusiast or on the path to building your own business kingdom, conferences seem a great opportunity to get involved in the tech and startup community. Not only do they offer an involvement and even emotional connection with other entrepreneurs, but they also constitute a great source of knowledge and trends derived from the stage and networking opportunities. Making new contacts at events might be crucial for your business. At ITgenerator, we are prep maniacs and love to be well-prepared when we attend any tech event. You can read about tips that help you rock at the next business conference.

Since these conferences can be an extremely valuable resource for anybody interested in startups, we’ve put together a list of our top 10 picks for 2019.

Techchill

Why you should go:

For startups, in particular, TechChill gives a chance to move forward. Pitch academy and Pitch Battle is a crucial opportunity for early-stage startups to get feedback and mentorship, and compete for audience attention – several have found investors sitting in the audience. Startup Expo is also a great way to show one’s product or idea to a wider audience, and bigger companies can use this to attract new hires and partnerships, as well as valuable knowledge and inspiration for their employees. But of course, the main reason to come is networking – both the pre-meetings with investors and countless opportunities to talk to the people you need to meet to grow your business.

KEY INFORMATION

Startup Ole’

Why you should go:

Startup Olé 2019 will take place in Salamanca (Spain) between 26th-29th of March and it will gather +30.000 attendees from 120 countries; +850 startups, scaleups and spin-offs; +500 speakers; +250 corporates and investors with an investment portfolio of over €50k M. The goal is to help the best startups in Europe meet people and organizations that can give them support for their projects, namely, accelerators, investors, public administrations, policy-makers, universities, talent, etc. Startup Olé has become a benchmark event for the international tech-entrepreneurial ecosystem, and its fifth edition is expected to be the biggest and most impactful ever.

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EU-Startups Summit

Why you should go:

The EU-Startups Summit 2019 will bring together over 1,200 founders, startup enthusiasts, corporates, angel investors, VCs, as well as media people from all across Europe. The two-day event is a great opportunity for networking and a meeting point for aspiring entrepreneurs and investors who are aiming at building international tech companies. During the EU-Startups Summit, a big pitch competition will occur with 15 of European most exciting early-stage startups. The pre-selected startups will pitch their business idea during a 3-minute-presentation in front of the audience and an expert jury of well-known investors. The winner will receive an awesome prize package worth about €70,000. Is it worth attending? Yeah, you are right!

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InfoShare

Why you should go:

InfoShare is where you can share your story and make your ideas happen. Here you will find knowledge and inspiration, form meaningful relations and create truly innovative technological society. In two days, full of great speeches you can choose two stages, one for startup and the other one for more technical topics. There is also a pitch stage for startups, during which you can share your idea with investors and other founders, as well as listen to their feedback. Together with more than 6000 attendees, you can spend a great time at InfoShare and in one of the beautiful cities in Poland. We will definitely be there again in 2019, so will you?

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The Next Web Conference

Why you should go:

The TNW Conference is all about networking. In the previous edition, over 350 startups participated in nearly 4,000 meetings using their in-house matchmaking and scheduling platform. Since 2006, TNW Conference has brought together the ecosystem of technology agents driving business innovation. In 2018, they expanded into 18 carefully curated tracks to shape a much deeper conversation on how technologies such as blockchain and AI will directly affect industries, professions and the way we innovate. Previous roundtable hosts have included the founder of Foursquare, the CEO of Product Hunt, and the VP of Data Science at Buzzfeed. Each year, there are more than 20 of Holland’s best rolling kitchens and places, which serve all-day entertainment such as live music, retro arcade games and wellness sessions.

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Latitude59

Why you should go:

Estonia is a booming IT hub with the highest number of startups per capita in Europe. Estonia also offers the world’s first e-Residency program which allows for the establishment of a transnational secure digital identity empowering entrepreneurs to run a location independent business online from anywhere in the world. In 2018, Latitude59 conference welcomed more than 2000 attendees, 200 investors spanning from the US to Japan and 150 startups – mostly from the neighboring Baltic, Nordic & CEE countries. It is worth mentioning Latitude59 Pitch Competition program organized in partnership with Nordic Angel Program (run by EstBAN). In 2018, 4 teams on stage deemed investment-ready by the NAP syndicate partners and competed for the prize of €170,000 seed investment.

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Heureka

Why you should go:

The conference focuses on sharing knowledge centered around the primary factors of sustainable success – particularly as it applies to early-stage start-ups. Also, the conference is a great way to get a feel for Berlin’s buzzing startup scene and rub shoulders with investors and champions of the local industry. Speakers will share important insights on both startup success and failure, with a focus on keeping success sustainable. They’ll do this through panel discussions, motivational talks, interactive workshops, experience reports and Q&A sessions. As an added bonus, a hardware area will allow attendees to get their hands on innovative tech and learn about new tech trends. Hurry up! It’s still not too late for you to organize a trip to Berlin and attend the Heureka conference 2019.

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Tech Open Air

Why you should go:

Tech Open Air is a tech startup conference in Europe that is focused on providing insightful information and tips for entrepreneurs. With previous supporters including giants like Apple, Google, and IBM – TOA is a top-tier tech event geared towards multidisciplinarians and promises to inspire at every turn.  Plus, it’s huge – there’s something for everybody at Tech Open Air. Look for Open Circle at TOA conference, which can curate an unforgettable “TOA Berlin experience”. Piloted in 2016, it’s four days of programming concurrent with the festival, including dinners, exclusive parties, private Q&As with keynote speakers, and special matchmaking sessions. The conference is a good opportunity to learn from successful entrepreneurs, make connections or to pitch your idea.

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Bits & Pretzels

Why you should go:

Bits & Pretzels is an application-only, three-day festival that connects 5,000 founders, investors, startup enthusiasts, and all other decision-makers of the startup ecosystem. The festival takes place in a unique setting around the Oktoberfest in Munich. Attending the Startup Nights all over the city is nice, but entering the Oktoberfest with fellow startup enthusiasts is incredible! Bits & Pretzels has great speakers from different backgrounds and industries, with three clear highlights: Kevin Spacey, who is acting as an investor himself, gave a fabulous speech about story telling, which incorporated multiple topics (disruptive technologies, his own career and ‘Underwood’) in an entertaining way. The other highlight was Sir Richard Branson, the ‘Enfant terrible’ of the corporate world, who enchanted the audience with his charisma and witty, precise answers to the interviewer. The third speaker, Nathan Blecharczyk, co-founder and CTO of Airbnb, gave insights into how Airbnb started, how hundreds of investors hadn’t seen its potential and how luck (equals preparation meets opportunity) and execution can lead to success. Bits & Pretzels conference has everything you need!

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Web Summit

Why you should go:

It is the best technology conference on the planet” according to Forbes and “the Olympics for geeks” as declared by Politico. In 2018, there were approximately 69,000 participants from 159 countries, 1,500 tech investors and 1,800 start-ups. Web Summit is an extremely crowded conference with tons of networking opportunities. Don´t expect the investors to come to you – it will not happen. If you are looking for investors, the only way Web Summit will give value is if you´ve booked meetings with investors in advance. You have also pitching experience combined with getting real honest feedback from an expert panel through the pitch program. In comparison to other tech events, Web Summit is quite cheap. Besides, there is a nice mobile app at your disposal to contact and receive responses from your target audience. Stay open to late-night walks along the sea, party-crashing and random conversations that will take your experience to a whole other level of awesomeness!

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2019 is going to be a very busy year. We hope that list above will help you pick the most suitable events for you.  Just put some words in the comment section below and share with others about your favorite conference or event in the startup industry. See you soon, near the best European startup stages in 2019.

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Top 10 events for Startups in Europe you can’t miss in 2019

Piotr Juszczak
Chief Operating Officer at ITgenerator, passionate about interdisciplinary creativity and agile software development. After hours, he is looking for another Ace on a tennis court or strong wind on his sailboard.


Also published on Medium.

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