Startup Lithuania Recognized as Prime Example at Fostering Entrepreneurship by WEF and EIB
The European Investment Bank (EIB) and World Economic Forum (WEF) have today published a paper that identified around 25 concrete examples in Europe of real initiatives focused on innovation and entrepreneurship that can serve as starting points for implementation, acceleration and scaling up. There, Startup Lithuania was mentioned as a great example of catalysing the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
Enterprise Lithuania, a government agency under the Ministry of Economy, established Startup Lithuania in 2013 as a one stop shop for the country’s start-ups, the joint paper by EIB and WEB, with contributions from the think tank Bruegel, states.
The Startup Lithuania initiative facilitates the matching of entrepreneurs to investors and larger enterprises through events, such as the Startup Lithuania Roadshow and LOGIN Startup Fair. It encourages learning through other events (e.g. Barcamps, Fail-ups and Hacker Games), and strives to propose data-driven policies, including one to introduce a Startup Visa.
The number of local start-ups grew to over 400 in 2016. By helping bridge the gap in knowledge and coordination, Startup Lithuania has made these enterprises and the ecosystem as a whole more competitive, the paper recognizes. The initiative promotes inclusion in different ways, for example by making all information required by start-ups easily available in one place. In addition, Startup Lithuania addresses some of the main challenges of small businesses; it gives them access to investors and mentors, and encourages women to participate by reaching out through local networks. Moreover, it sees entrepreneurship as a way to reduce youth unemployment.
Critically, the initiative’s success relies on a broad coalition of stakeholders, including thought leaders, corporate leaders, the government and universities, all of whom were involved in Startup Lithuania’s early stages.
In early April Baltic Summit is being accompanied by the United States-Baltic Business Forum, which representatives from approximately 20 Lithuanian businesses have left for with a trade mission organised by Enterprise Lithuania. At the forum that took place on 3 of April in Washington DC, special attention was paid to bilateral business relations in the defence sector.
Startup Fair. Growth, one of the top startup events in the Baltic and the neighboring countries, which will take place in Vilnius on 16-17 May 2018 for the sixth time already, is becoming a central venue not only for the startups, but also for the most active investors in the region.