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Estonian Entrepreneurial Ecosystem (the Connectors)


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Estonian Entrepreneurial Ecosystem (the Connectors)

  1. 1. Public & Private Connectors in the Estonian Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Andrus Viirg Enterprise Estonia Silicon Valley International Workshop “ENTREPRENEURIAL ECOSYSTEMS AND GROWTH-ORIENTED ENTREPRENEURSHIP” Nov.7, the Hague, Netherlands
  2. 2. ENTERPRISE ESTONIA State foundation for Business Support & Development: Investment, Trade, Innovation/Technology and Tourism promotion + the Space Office of Estonia implementing agency of the EU structural funds in Estonia  budget of 1.3 billion USD (2007-2013)  about 300 employees  providing financing/grant products, advice, partnership opportunities and training Investment, Trade, Tourism & Innovation Promotion – assisting international companies to estonianize – assisting Estonian companies to internationalize – Foreign (promotional) Offices in Stockholm, Helsinki , Hamburg, London, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Oslo Shanghai, Tokyo and Silicon Valley
  3. 3. Estonia produces a disproportionate number of startups per capita slide by Robin Wauters during Seedcamp Week in London (sept.2011), where out of 20 companies 4 Estonian startups presented (were the finalists) With 0.2% of EU population Estonia produces ca 20% of EU (successful) startups #estonianmafia & 500Startups
  4. 4. Behind the scenes: e-Estonia birthplace of Kazaa & Skype e & m services Estonia's capital Tallinn - (david jones) electronic ID card from 2002 LES ECHOS/Worldcrunch e-taxboard, e-voting,... m-parking 98% of bank transactions electronically NATO Cyber Defence Centre EU IT Agency HQs
  5. 5. Doing Business in Estonia • simple tax system – flat 21% income tax – NO Corporate Income tax (21% tax on dividends only) • efficient company setup and reporting based on e-government solutions • limited grant schemes (subsidies) for business support
  6. 6. The Phenomenon • Serial entrepreneurs • Ambient Sound Investments (ASI) • Estonian Startup Leaders Club • Garage48 (a boot-camp initiative to build new web and mobile services in just 48 hours) • EstBAN (Estonian Business Angels Network) • ESTVCA (Estonian Venture Capital Association) • International Accellerators & Co-Working Spaces – StartupWiseGuys – GameFounders – Technopolis Ülemiste
  7. 7. Public Connectors of the Estonian entrepreneurial ecosystem • Enterprise Estonia o Grant schemes for starting the business, product development, expanding to foreign markets, employee training o StartSmart (EST- FIN network for startups,...) o BrainHunt o Network of Foreign Rep. Offices • Estonian Development Fund & SmartCap o Monitoring & Growth Programs o Governmnet VC arm • Tallinn Tech University o Mektory (Innovation & busines center) • Tallinn Science Park Tehnopol o Prototron, prototyping fund
  8. 8. Mentoring Capital Estonian startup ecosystem Education and awareness Idea testing Prototyping Product Market fit/ Entering market Expansion
  9. 9. networking, networking, networking... the power of Global Networks & Social Networking & Nordic Bridge Organizations ConnectEstonia; SeedForum; Seedcamp,.... European Innovation Academy
  10. 10. Key Takeaways Entrepreneurial Ecosystem in Estonia • Feeding the Entrepreneurial Mindset – University Entrepreneurship Programs & Study Tours/Benchmarking – Use of Social Networking Tools – Developing core competencies (cyber security; EV charging infra) • Risk Capital Formation & Venture Funding – Government Venture Fund – Incubator/accellerator models – PublicPrivatePartnerships • Role of the Government (regulations) – Starting the business made easy – But.... • still legal & mental obstacles in business liquidation process • confusing tax regulations on option schemes (seen as fringe benefits)
  11. 11. Serial Entrepreneurship in technology startups with scalable business models & products is the KEY! BUT..... the focus should be going to Mars not just creating another social network! Combination of Entrepreneurial & Innovation Ecosystems + Tech Entrepreneurs, Companies and Universities working together: Tech Transfer + Research with Commercialization Potential