LAUNCHub Presents 25 Digital Startups in Sofia

12 advanced LAUNCHub portfolio digital companies raising for next round and 13 shortlisted startup teams eligible for seed investment pitched their products and solutions in Sofia, Bulgaria

The Sofia based LAUNCHub Seed Fund organised a four-day investment forum in Sofia from March 20 to March 23 this past weekend, also known as the Fifth edition of the Long Weekend Event. The event ran in parallel with the Fund’s introducing 12 of its advanced digital companies to leading European VC’s and entrepreneurship partners and presenting the 13 shortlisted candidates for seed investment further to the latest application run an announced earlier in February 2014.

The Investors Day on March 21, 2014, brought together leading European and international VC’s and investment organisations as Early Bird, 3TS Capital, RSG Capital, SEEDRS, ALICE, Bulgarian investors, business angels and representatives of the EIF. The friendly and creative atmosphere of the piano bar theatre, chosen as the event venue, proved once again that Sofia is surely to be considered as the next important tech hub in Europe with an ecosystem continuously growing and attracting both tech talent and investors interest from the region of Southeastern Europe.

12 companies with various products and solutions in the digital tech sector from Bulgaria, Slovenia, Greece and Croatia pitched on stage demonstrating a remarkable progress over the past year and readiness to take the next big investment step.

Dale Huxford from Orrick spoke on what is yet to be expected when moving forward with each funding round, while Collette Ballou from Ballout PR and Mike Butcher from TechCrunch addressed the communication challenges entrepreneurs face when entering the news headlines and managing their corporate reputation.

In parallel to the Investors Day, the LAUNCHub team presented the final shortlist of digital-tech applicants eligible for seed funding, further to the application run announced earlier in February 2014. Startup teams from seven countries (Bulgaria, Slovenia, Serbia, Italy, Czech Republic, Ireland and Kosovo) arrived in Sofia for the 5th Edition of the Long Weekend Event in Sofia from March 20 to March 23. After four days of intensive work with coachers and more than 50 mentors and really impressive pitching by the shortlisted startups, the LAUNCHub Investment Committee is expected to decide on the winners in the Long Weekend to be offered investment of up to 200 K Euro in exchange of equity.

The official statement for the Fund’s new investment decisions and new companies on board is expected later in April. More information on the participating companies is available on the company website.

As of March 2014, LAUNCHub has invested 3 million Euro in 35 companies from 7 countries in the region. LAUNCHub operates under the Entrepreneurship Acceleration and Seed financial instrument of the JEREMIE initiative of the EIF and EC.