July 10, 2019
Greece – a Hub for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
It has been less than a decade since the startup entrepreneurship community started flourishing in Greece. During that period, the local entrepreneurial ecosystem has seen a lot of activity, ranging from: the establishment of more than 300 startups, with respectable investments from both VCs and angel investors, a couple of exits, a €500ml Equifund inauguration and all of these during a massive financial crisis. innovative technological startups have been greatly supported by the local ecosystem and MIT Enterprise Forum Greece is one of the leaders in the sector.
As every summer and after an intensive six month acceleration program, MIT Enterprise Forum Greece celebrated its 5th annual “Startup Competition”, with the Final Judging & Award Ceremony on July 2nd. EBAN was represented at the event by its active member Maria Hala, as part of competition judges’ panel. What really made this year’s event an exceptional one was not only the diversity of the sectors that startups represented, but also the high standard of the teams participating.
With a judging panel represented by distinguished Greek and international members from the investment and business community, the winners were selected from two different categories. The winners of the General Track category were: first prize, Twiddle, a venture that develops AI powered film which automates the video editing process by recommending the right music and sound effects at the right time within any video; second prize, AidPlex, a HealthTech startup that aims to disrupt the orthopedics sector by offering patient-centered products and revolutionizing the monitoring of patient; and third prize, PD Neurotechnology, a venture that develops wearable medical devices for continuous monitoring of movement disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease. On the other hand, the winner of Energy & Mobility Track was Bunkering at Sea, an innovative web-based platform that provides optimal network solutions for bunkering.
In addition to the competition, MITEF Greece organized one day earlier an excellent workshop on “Creating and Realizing the Value of Innovation”, from Prof. Jerome Schaufeld, WPI School of Business, founder and first Chairman of the MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge. During the workshop, Prof. Schaufeld shared with the audience his extended entrepreneurial experience, while a group of private equity investors provided their views and two exceptional examples of the Greek startup ecosystem that shared with the audience their journey of innovation: Innoetics, the startup that specializes in text-to-speech technologies and was acquired by Samsung in 2017 and RTsafe, the MedTech venture that has introduced individualized care in radiation oncology.
So, yes! Greece has technological innovative entrepreneurial startup teams, attracts the interest of the investment community and receives the support of the local ecosystem. And yes, Greece has become a hub for innovation and entrepreneurship!