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Ukraine - the next startup nation


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Why is the high-tech industry called IT in Ukraine and is it always going to be like this? Undoubtedly we are optimistic about Ukrainian future. Ukraine has all the potential to move from selling development services to selling development products like Israel. Even though Ukrainians can't rely on their government, they are able to create the next startup nation by themselves.

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Ukraine - the next startup nation

  1. 1. Ukraine – the next startup nation Aviram Eisenberg Investor Day Central and Eastern Europe, Kyiv 2014
  2. 2. Are you Crazy? “A lot of people ask me if I am crazy?“ “You are living in Ukraine? In these times???” Well, I live in Israel, we are kinda used to state of war… I am just replacing this: With this: 2
  3. 3. The First Time I Came to Ukraine… 8 Years ago I came to Ukraine for the first time… I put on a nice suit (so I thought) and shopped for a good development partner Everybody was talking with me about the IT Industry (and I thought this “High-Tech” with Russian accent IT = Selling Development Services High-Tech = Selling Developed Products How do we turn the IT industry to High-Tech (and not just by changing the accent) 3
  4. 4. About Me Father of 3 wonderful children High-Tech professional for the last 30 years - Computer geek in my teenage days - Platoon commander in the Army Intelligence (computer related) - Computer Science Graduate from the Technion - Chief Architect at Mind CTI - Founder and CEO Of Ignite – a global IT company - Chairman of the Israeli R&D Managers forum Lives in Kiev (Ukraine is my second home!) 4
  5. 5. 5 Country History 66 years 22,072 km2 23 years 603,628 km2 Age Territory Population 8,14 mln 44,29 mln
  6. 6. 6 Israel – the land of the entrepreneurial spirit Wars 10 wars (every 5-10 years) 1947-1949, 1956, 1967, 1967-1970, 1973, 1982-2000, 2008-2009, 2010, 2012, 2014 Daily living under possible terrorist attacks now WWaarrss High level of risk tolerance! Just remember the proverb, “the entrepreneur that died without ever going bankrupt had a premature death…”
  7. 7. Israel is the Startup Nation Tel-Aviv comes is #2 in the top startup ecosystems in the world R&D centers of Intel, Google, Microsoft, Facebook, IBM, etc. 450-500 startups are established every year each month 10 companies move to New York distributed and powerful angel investors network most venture capital per capita: 2.5 times more than the U.S. and 30 times more than Europe 7
  8. 8. 8 Startup ecosystem 70 2000 7 50 500 + VC funds Angel investors Active startups 5000 +
  9. 9. How Did it Start? But, it was not always like that! 30 years ago Israel’s was very much like Ukraine – selling IT services to the USA The Israeli Army produced excellent developers International companies came to shop for good (and cheap) developers and established branches (Motorola, then Intel, then Microsoft…) With time, developers left the big companies and started small innovative product companies in the same vertical Investor-friendly government policy brought more big companies 9
  10. 10. How Did it Start? Few startups were sold to international companies Then came the VCs and the private investors And the rest is history… You can read the book 10
  11. 11. Israel and Ukraine – different but alike! High motivation for High education (the Jewish mam factor) The hunger to succeed Individualistic and entrepreneurial spirit The need to control your own destiny Tolerance to Risk Flexible mind – the ability to overcome difficulties Opportunistic mentality – the other side of difficulty is opportunity! 11
  12. 12. So how do we do that??? You are barking at the wrong tree!!! The bad news: the public sector WILL DO NOTHING! The good news: Ukrainians are practical people – they ALWAYS JOIN SUCCEESS The private sector has to ACT! 12
  13. 13. Ukrainian startup incubators The next step is for IT companies to open on-site incubators, R&D and startup programs encouraging more entrepreneurship! ________________________________________________________________ 13 Example: Cikklum announced opening of own incubation center.
  14. 14. 14 Conclusion - new incubator coming, join! Ignite plans to open a new incubator in Kyiv Focus Homeland and cyber security Medical devices Social and Mobile gaming SW tools and SW Infrastructure We are looking for Angels VC investors Startups Mentors Tech advisers Entrepreneurs If you are interested to take part in any form, come to talk or drop a line to
  15. 15. 15 Thank you for attention! Follow me