Iran Startups –
Building Bridges from
In- and Outside
by Puja Abbassi
Iranian Brain Gain 2014-05-07
 Researcher & PhD Candidate - University of Cologne
 Entrepreneurship & Venture Capital
 Diversity
 Cyber Security
 S...
Iran Startup Ecosystem in 2
Years
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pEmZvD9FOwo
 More than 60% of the people are under 30 years old
 High proportion of technical educated young people
 High motivatio...
Iran Startups – State of the
Union
 Highly motivated and growing scene - often up to 40% women.
 Highly active, motivate...
Iran Web and Mobile
Conference
 Biggest Conference on Iran Startups
 http://conf.iranwebfestival.com
Startup Weekend in Iran
 2000 entrepreneurs
 120 teams
 15 events
 9 cities
 18 months
‫ن‬‫ن‬‫ا‬
‫ا‬ ‫ﺮ‬
‫ﯾ‬
‫ﯾ‬
‫اا‬...
Iran Startups are Gaining Intl.
Interest
 Startup Rising: Iran | PandoDaily | Christopher M. Schroeder
 http://pando.com...
What does the Ecosystem
need (Inside)
 More Startups
 First big exits
 More entrepreneurs
 Education
 Events
 Semina...
What does the Ecosystem
need from the Diaspora?
 „Mentorship and guidance. IEA could help connect these two
together.“
 ...
Notable Iranian
Entrepreneurs
 Roxanne Varza (@roxannevarza)
 startup lead @microsoft / @msftventures. cofounder @tech_e...
What Can You Do?
Spread the Word!
Get in Touch!
Work together!
Recources from Iran
 StartupCast by Hadi Farnoud (English)
 https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/startupcast/id878112085
...
Startup Ecosystem Leaders in
Iran
 Mohsen Malayeri (@malayeri)
 Hamidreza Ahmadi (@hrahmadi8)
 Hadi Farnoud (@hadifarno...
What Can You Do?
Spread the Word!
Get in Touch!
Work together!
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Iran Startups - Building Bridges - Iranian Brain Gain 2014

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Short talk I prepared for a panel on "Diaspora, Entrepreneurship – From brain drain to brain gain: What can be the role of Iranian diaspora in innovation, technology transfer and entrepreneurship in Iran?"

I also added the video of my talk and the panel discussion at the end.

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Iran Startups - Building Bridges - Iranian Brain Gain 2014

  1. 1. Iran Startups – Building Bridges from In- and Outside by Puja Abbassi Iranian Brain Gain 2014-05-07
  2. 2.  Researcher & PhD Candidate - University of Cologne  Entrepreneurship & Venture Capital  Diversity  Cyber Security  Supply Chain (& Food) Security  Work in and advise startups since 2004  Organizer, Speaker, Startup Mentor: Puja Abbassi http://pujaabbassi.com @puja108 Who am I
  3. 3. Iran Startup Ecosystem in 2 Years https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pEmZvD9FOwo
  4. 4.  More than 60% of the people are under 30 years old  High proportion of technical educated young people  High motivation and acceptance in society for entrepreneurs  Internet penetration at 60%. Mobile penetration is 120%!!  Internetspeed low, but imporivng. Mobile speeds even lower, but first 3G net is up.  Online/Mobile Banking is getting possible.  Often many sources of early-stage money from family and friends  Lower risk  Maybe that‘s why there‘s no angels? Iran – State of the Union
  5. 5. Iran Startups – State of the Union  Highly motivated and growing scene - often up to 40% women.  Highly active, motivated, and experienced leaders  Many internationally renowned events like Startup Weekend, NEXT, FailCon, LeanStartupMachine, Seedstars, …  Own big events with intl. speakers like “Iran Web and Mobile Conference”  Many opportunities still open  Entrepreneurs motivated to do more  Startup education still needs work  Investors still rare and term sheets mainly in their favor (50% equity for a round is not unheard of) https://angel.co/iran
  6. 6. Iran Web and Mobile Conference  Biggest Conference on Iran Startups  http://conf.iranwebfestival.com
  7. 7. Startup Weekend in Iran  2000 entrepreneurs  120 teams  15 events  9 cities  18 months ‫ن‬‫ن‬‫ا‬ ‫ا‬ ‫ﺮ‬ ‫ﯾ‬ ‫ﯾ‬ ‫اا‬ ‫ر‬‫ر‬‫د‬ ‫د‬ ‫ﺪ‬‫ﻨ‬ ‫وﯾﯾﻜﮑ‬ ‫و‬ ‫پ‬ ‫پ‬ ‫ﺎ‬ ‫ﺗ‬ ‫ر‬ ‫ﺎر‬ ‫ﺘ‬ ‫ﺳ‬ ‫اا‬‫ﺪ‬ ‫ﺷ‬ ‫رر‬  ‫ﺳ‬‫د‬ ‫ﯾ‬ ‫ﺎ‬ ‫ﺎ‬
  8. 8. Iran Startups are Gaining Intl. Interest  Startup Rising: Iran | PandoDaily | Christopher M. Schroeder  http://pando.com/2014/05/20/startup-rising-iran/  The startup community in Iran is “drawing a lot of inspiration from what’s happening in the West.” | L'Atelier - Paris | Roxanne Varza  http://www.atelier.net/en/trends/articles/startup-community-iran- drawing-lot-inspiration-what-happening-west_429292  VC Firms Start Investing in Iran’s IT Market | Angle Chronicle | Mahboobeh Khorshidi  http://www.anglechronicle.com/vc-firms-start-investing-in-irans-it- market/454/  What It’s Like Being a Business Traveler in Iran | Harvard Business Review| Christopher M. Schroeder  http://blogs.hbr.org/2014/05/what-its-like-being-a-business- traveler-in-iran/
  9. 9. What does the Ecosystem need (Inside)  More Startups  First big exits  More entrepreneurs  Education  Events  Seminars  Accelerators  Money  Angels  Accelerators  Early-Stage Funds  VCs  International Publicity and Recognition Tech (AT) is the first ian startup accelerator gram. It provide startups h seed funding, office space, ntorship and access to an ensive network of investors corporates.
  10. 10. What does the Ecosystem need from the Diaspora?  „Mentorship and guidance. IEA could help connect these two together.“  Adopt-A-Founder Program  Mentors for first Accelerator (AvaTech)  „Be an ambassador of Iranian startups. Just spread the word and raise awareness.“  Articles, talks, interviews, panels, etc.  See Roxanne, Daniel, Christopher, etc.  Iran’s tech ecosystem struggles to catch up to Persian diaspora startups  http://www.vancouverobserver.com/world/middle-east/iran’s- tech-ecosystem-struggles-catch-persian-diaspora-startups All RightsReserved - IEA 2013 Adopt&a&Founder ajoint initiative by IEA &AvaTech Monday, April 28, 14
  11. 11. Notable Iranian Entrepreneurs  Roxanne Varza (@roxannevarza)  startup lead @microsoft / @msftventures. cofounder @tech_eu @girlsintech_uk @gitparis & @failcon paris. ex techcrunch france editor @TCFR  Shervin Pishevar (@shervin)  GP @Sherpa, Advisor & Board Observer @Uber. Investor @Uber, @MachineZone, @WarbyParker, @Munchery, @Tumblr, @Fab. Co- Founder @Webs, SGN, WebOS. Crown Fellow 2014.  Arash Ferdowsi (@arashf)  Founder & CTO at Dropbox  Salar Kamangar (CEO/SVP Youtube)  Ali Jafari (@jafari)  VP, Direct Sales Europe at Twitter
  12. 12. What Can You Do? Spread the Word! Get in Touch! Work together!
  13. 13. Recources from Iran  StartupCast by Hadi Farnoud (English)  https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/startupcast/id878112085  https://soundcloud.com/hadifarnoud/sets/startupcast  Medium Collection (English)  https://medium.com/iran-startups  Iran Startups  https://www.facebook.com/groups/startupir/  http://irstartups.com (@Startupir)  Iran Entrepreneurship Association (Farsi)  http://iranea.com  https://www.startupdigest.com/digests/iran  http://karya.ir (@KaryaEdu)
  14. 14. Startup Ecosystem Leaders in Iran  Mohsen Malayeri (@malayeri)  Hamidreza Ahmadi (@hrahmadi8)  Hadi Farnoud (@hadifarnoud)  Shayan Shalileh (@shayanshalileh)  Mobin Ranjbar (@MobinRanjbar)
  15. 15. What Can You Do? Spread the Word! Get in Touch! Work together!

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