Accelerator Panel at this year’s EU-Startups Summit: Meet Katapult, Startup Wise Guys, Rockstart and Startupbootcamp!

On May 12-13 we’ll be hosting this year’s EU-Startups Summit in beautiful Barcelona! At the in-person comeback of one of Europe’s hottest startup events, you will have the chance to connect and network with about 1,600 founders, startup enthusiasts and investors from all over Europe, learn from around 70 speakers, listen to educational talks and enjoy interesting panel discussions.

This year, one of the panel discussions on our main stage will be covering all-things Accelerators! For early-stage startups there are many benefits to accelerator programmes. They help you speed up your progress, grow your network, gain some clout and attention, get some exclusive perks, find future customers, and avoid costly mistakes – just to name a few of the advantages.

Across Europe, accelerator programmes are becoming more and more active in supporting our thriving startup ecosystem and it’s a real positive sign for the future. They’re giving startup founders the chance to validate their ideas, get tangible support as well as grow the community surrounding European innovation. That’s why we‘ve organised a panel discussion at this year’s Summit, representing some of the leading accelerator programmes from the continent and exploring the benefits these can bring to your startup. 

The panel discussion will feature Startup Wise Guys Founder and CEO Cristobal Alonso; Katapult VC COO & Partner, Nina Heir; Rockstart CEO and co-founder, Rune Theill; and Startupbootcamp Managing Director, Kauan Von Novack.

Startup Wise Guys, founded in 2012 in Harju Estonia, is a mentorship-driven accelerator programme that focuses on early-stage startups in B2B SaaS, Fintech, Cyber, and Sustainability verticals. The 5-month programme provides seed capital, office space and most importantly – world-class mentors.  This is in addition to the alumni community of 250+ startups in more than 45 countries.

Cristobal Alonso is an experienced entrepreneur and early-stage investor – the ultimate “make it happen” person. A truly global executive, he has worked internationally leading teams and projects of up to 500 people. At Startup Wise Guys, Cristobal leads as CEO and Energy Master. His leadership has seen SWG expand from Estonia to establish a presence in all three Baltic countries as well as Italy, and launched programs across Europe and Africa. He also recently co-authored Perform, The Unsexy Truth About (Startup) Success, a book on startup leadership and performance.

Rockstart is an early stage investor that empowers purpose-driven founders across three domains: Energy, AgriFood and Emerging Technologies. To date, Rockstart has invested in more than 260 startups and its alumni value to date is more than $1bn.

Rune Theill has more than ten years of experience in building ecosystems for entrepreneurs. Rune started his career at Venture Cup in 2010 where he was part of building out the largest business plan for students in the Nordics. In 2011 he joined Startupbootcamp where he focused on community development, marketing, and deal-sourcing. In 2012, Rune moved to Amsterdam to co-found Rockstart. During his time at Rockstart, Rune has had a leading role in selecting and fast-tracking startups across AgriFood, Energy and Emerging Tech. Rune took the position of CEO of Rockstart in 2016.

Headquartered in Amsterdam, Startupbootcamp was founded in 2010 and is supporting top startups across the world through over 20 offices in key global hubs. Startupbootcamp has a proven mentor-driven and industry-focused model of supporting innovative companies that has resulted in 70% of program graduates being still active and 64% having raised additional funding from many of the world’s leading VCs and angels. 

Kauan Von Novack is the Managing Director of Startupbootcamp and has vast experience in building successful companies. Now, he is focused on passing that knowledge on to the next generation creating companies of the future. Kauan was founder and co-founder of over 17 startups and scaleups, 2 exits, published 3 books & mentored hundreds of startups over the years.

Katapult was founded in 2017 in Oslo with the vision to make impact investing mainstream and mobilize capital and businesses to deliver positive impact. The firm accelerates and invests in impact tech companies solving the world’s greatest challenges. Currently, the company has $100 million under management, has invested in 138 companies across 35 countries, and, conducted 9 flagship accelerator programmes. This year Katapult is also launching its first programs in Africa: in Mauritius and in Rwanda. The  Katapult Foundation was launched in 2020 to continue the wider vision of the company.

COO and Partner of Katapult VC, Nina Heir is on a mission to use the investment to drive innovation that solves the world’s greatest challenges. Nina has had extensive experience in both the venture capital and the impact investment space. She is a member of the Leaders for Climate Action community, the FightBack Community and The Global Women in VC community.  Passionate about using tech for positive impact, she is a true expert in how to fast-track companies that promote positivity.

During the panel discussion at the Summit we will learn more about each participating accelerator and their individual strengths, as well as delving into topics around how to find the right accelerator for your startup and tips on how to make the most out of these programmes. 

We know you don’t want to miss it, so, secure your ticket today! In the meantime, get a taste of what’s to come by checking out this video:

Our Event Sponsors

Silicon Castles is a Tech Company Builder and Strategic Business Accelerator for technology, intellectual property and licensing businesses, located in Salzburg, Austria. The focus is on European Diamonds: technology startups with a unique business idea, scalable technology and outstanding intellectual property. Silicon Castles also organizes the Startup Executive Academy (SEA), an international Go-to-Market program for founders and executives of early-stage startups, taking place annually since 2017.

Unleashed, by the Purina Accelerator Lab, is the first and only accelerator programme in Europe dedicated exclusively to pet-tech. Their goal is to shape the future of pet care by supporting disruptive pet startups with technologies in advanced nutrition, sustainability, health and digital solutions that enrich the lives of pets and the people who love them. Over the last 2 years, Unleashed had accelerated 12 pet startups, facilitated >350 founders in the Unleashed community and welcomed over 1000 subscribers to the Unleashed pet tech newsletter.

Webex offers industry leading solutions in video conferencing, team collaboration, calling, contact centre and devices, and is trusted by 95% of the Fortune 500. With Webex, businesses can simplify communication, inspire innovation, and empower people to engage with each other anywhere on any device – giving businesses the ultimate edge. Because, when businesses enable employees to bring their best selves to work, everyone wins.

Freshworks is the leader of cloud-based customer and employee software including CRM, livechat, support, marketing automation, ITSM, & HRMS. Products are simple to set up, cost-effective & equipped with powerful automation. Through the Freshworks for Startups program the EU-Startups community can gain access to up to $10k credits on essential tools & products for your Startup. You also get access to Freshworks’ community of VCs, Investors, Mentors, & Customers. Claim your benefits here.

MarketerHire is the fast, easy way to get access to the world’s best marketers. Its recent launch into Europe means you now have on-demand access to our global network of expert, pre-vetted marketers with zero financial risk and full flexibility. Already, the company has over 3,500 customers ranging from early-stage startups to Fortune 500 companies, including: Netflix, AngelList, Plaid, Quip, Skillshare, Udacity and others.

Dassault Systèmes, the 3DEXPERIENCE Company, is a catalyst for human progress. Dassault provides businesses and people with collaborative 3D virtual environments to imagine sustainable innovations. They have worked with hundreds of startups to support their dreams and help them scale up and launch innovative and disruptive products onto the global market. Fundamentally, Dassault Systemes believes that the only progress is human, and startups are pivotal to driving it forward.

SafetyWing-logoSafetyWing is building the first global safety net for remote companies, remote workers and nomads worldwide. Their products are built and designed by a fully remote team of nomads distributed across three continents. Remote Health by SafetyWing is a global health insurance that covers your employees and contractors worldwide under one simple plan.

ACCIÓ – Catalonia Trade & Investment is the Catalan Government’s agency that works to attract foreign investment to Catalonia, promoting the region as attractive, innovative and competitive business location for startups. Check out their offerings and the Catalonia Startup Directory.