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WELCOME Project

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2 years of WELCOME – and now the project is drawing to a close

2 years of WELCOME – and now the project is drawing to a close. It went by too fast!

This was an intense journey across Europe, bringing startups to meet new ecosystems, organising and taking part in the biggest tech events in the continent and so much more.

Look at the 2 years past through our final review presentations and through our numbers (click for high resolution!):

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Most importantly, 90% of selected startups now feel part of a Pan-European ecosystem – through qualified introductions across the continent they know the key players personally – and are thus part of the wider picture.

More concretely, Startup Europe’s main benefits were helping 80% startups expand to new markets and discover new partners and 50% actively scale up.

The services provided (soft landing, matchmaking, travel support, workshops, etc.) were valued at over 1000€ by half of the respondents, who were able to enjoy them for free thanks to the networks of local players enabled by Startup Europe.

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See more insights in the full document here

Looking back, it felt we were everywhere at the same time!

We were in more than 18 of the most important startup events around Europe, either through one-shot activities like Europass programme (Pioneers Vienna, IoT World Dublin, Slush Helsinki, Tech Open Air Berlin, etc) or with our two batches of the Roadshow that visited WELCOME’s ecosystems: Madrid, Salamanca, Berlin, Milan and Dublin (South Summit, Web Summit, Uprise Festival, Seeds & Chips, …). 

We’re very proud to have gathered such an impressive group of startups – check them out at our competition winners page and ask for our pitchdeck!

We were organising not only activities for startups, but for accelerators, universities, policy makers and all other ecosystem builders. Throughout these 2 years we also carried out initiatives such Accelerator Assembly, Startup Europe Comes to Universities, and Startup Europe Nations.

What did we learn through WELCOME?
  • Organising cross-border activities is hard and time consuming – it needs to be a win-win relationship for everyone – when you get that angle right, the magic happens.
  • WELCOME organised lots of small activities (workshops, matchmaking, roadshow, etc.) – they had the greatest impact when clustered around bigger events (Startup Europe Summit, Slush, Startup Ole, South Summit, etc.).
  • When bringing startups to events, what they value the most is the qualified networking, the extra activities, preferably invite-only, that we can get for them. That’s what makes the experience uniquely WELCOME.
  • Networks oriented to specific themes (accelerators, universities, etc) are highly valued – but also need a lot of animation and content – preferably coupled with other activities. However, the main result from all network meetings is always the networking, so that is the best focus to have.
  • In fact, WELCOME really showed that the human aspect is the most important factor to all activities organised, connecting people – not the prizes obtained in hackathons and competitions. (for more details, check out the matchmaking learnings here: http://welcomestartup.eu/5-things-we-learned-from-welcome-project-matchmakings/)

Now that the project is over, we look at what’s next in the horizon: new projects, new initiatives! Stay connected with the Startup Europe initiative to be part of this future!

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