On the face of it startup events might look like bunch of geeks listening to talks that provide little or no value over what can be obtained with an Internet connection and an ability to read.
Wrong! It’s not what happens on-stage but off-stage that matters. This is where grown men talk tech, drink imported beer and meet the most important people of their startup lives. This is where you get to know the people. And its the people you know that will make the difference between a success and a failure.
Yes, your product’s traction may play a role, but a few emails to the right people do wonders when you are running out of money, haven’t slept for days and are fighting windmills to close the one deal that means the difference between life and death. This is while at the same time Facebook is busy stealing your CTO right when your servers can’t cope with the increased traffic. That’s when knowing the right people come handy.
Contrary to what most believe, it matters little whether you are there to pitch to VCs or drink beer with your buddies. It’s still all about meeting the people.
Events you want to keep on your radar include our own ArcticEvenings, TechCrunch’s GeeknRolla and Amsterdam’s own The Next Web Conference. For ArcticEvening Helsinki and GeeknRolla London you’re already too late as those sold out fast, but for The Next Web you can still get your ticket here. See here for more upcoming Nordic events.
For more pure ‘pitch the VC’ events, make sure to check out the following two.
2010 Nordic Tech Tour
With this one you need to hurry up! Nordic Tech Tour will be held June 15-17 in Helsinki, Tallinn and Stockholm. The Tech Tour will pair the most promising early and later stage growth companies with representatives from leading cross-border venture capital and global corporate firms. The Funds that will be present at the Tech Tour represent over €10 billion worth of investment capital.
Companies from across the technology spectrum based in Finland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Iceland, and Estonia can register to compete to become one of 30 finalists. Finalists will be chosen from a pool of over 400 applicants. The deadline for applications is April 15, 2010 (That’s today!). There’s nothing like a last minute panic to get your registration form filled. Apply here.
SmartCamp from IBM
SmartCamp is a worldwide event aimed at early stage companies who have Smart technology solutions. The event is held in IBM Innovation Centre, Stockholm and IBM is looking for Smart Planet and Smart City solutions. SmartCamp is part of a global program working with partners like ALMI, STING, Seedcamp, NVN, Techstars, Innovate100, and many others. All companies selected spend a day with 25 seasoned mentors. According to IBM, last year roughly 80% of the finalist companies received funding or investment offers from their partners. This year selected companies will be invited to the world finals to be held in November and attendance is by invitation only – deadline for Stockholm applications is 30th April. You can read more about the event here (In Swedish!)
Also keep an eye out for Seedcamp Copenhagen 27th May!