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From the 30th of October till 11th of November Tehnopol held a business mission to Silicon Valley. During the two week mission delegation met with Steve Blank, visited Open Mobile Summit conference, visited the universities of Stanford and Berkeley and had multiple B2B or investor meetings.
The delegation included startup companies MyHistro, Innotal, GateMe, Merker.to and representatives from Estonian entrepreneurship program Startup Estonia and from University of Tartu study program DDVE.
In the first phase of the mission delegation met with reputable business accelerator programs like i/o Ventures and RocketSpace. In the first meetings they heard about business practice and introduction of how to start business in Silicon Valley. According to business interest, investor had meetings with Nexit Ventures and Institutional Venture Partners, which were organized specially for them. Meetings with Stanford and Berkeley Universities gave good overview of how can startup involve experts and workforce from the universities.
One main part of mission was participation in the Open Mobile Summit conference, which brought together key players in the mobile sector and gave opportunity to meet with companies representatives, whose contacts are very hard to get. Many big companies participated in conference, like Disney, Nokia, HTC, eBay, Samsung, Amazon, Skype, Roivo, Last.fm, Google etc.
On the next phase of mission mainly business meetings took place. The aim of these prearranged meetings was to find partners or investors for starting in USA. A reputable lawyer and advisor Richard Horning talked through specific steps that company must do to start their business in USA. Mission also took our companies to tours in Nokia and Skype.
Business mission highlight for the delegation was the meeting with Steve Blank. Steve approved the good quality of Estonian startup companies. He also mentioned how important is to develop entrepreneurship education across the universities. Steve proposed that it would be wise for Estonian business environment to invest in study programs and angel networks in order to generate more startups that are qualified and financed to enter foreign markets.
Program was combined by Andrus Viirg (B2B meetings), LeeAnne Haworth (B2B meetings, meetings), John Dogru and Yrjö Ojasaar (trainings before the mission). Program was coordinated and managed by Raido Pikkar.