TODAY.AZ / Business

Startup Weekend attracts outstanding investors and entrepreneurs to Baku

10 April 2014 [09:30] - TODAY.AZ
Startup Weekend is coming to Baku the second time. This time Startup Weekend Baku invites one of the best investors and entrepreneurs to the event. Anyone who considers themselves an entrepreneur or wants to be one can participate at the event.

Who are these awesome guests?

This time Speakers and mentors of Baku Startup Weekend '14 will be comprised of international experts among whom we can especially highlight Hussein Kanji. He was named among top 100 European tech investors and is a founding partner of venture capital firm Hoxton Ventures. Targeting Next $1B+ European Exit, Hoxton Ventures Pulls Back Curtain On New $40M Early-Stage VC Fund. Hussein formerly worked for Accel Partners, where he focused on consumer internet, financial technology and software investments including OpenGamma, Playfish (acquired by EA) and Dapper (acquired by Yahoo). Hussein joined Accel from Microsoft Corporation, where he held several strategy and product management roles. He began his career in the Bay Area, and helped found or play a key role at Safe-View (acquired by L-3), Radiance Technologies (acquired by Comcast) and Studio Verso (acquired by KPMG).

Alper Celen - Managing Partner at Commit Network, Serial entrepreneur, who prior to Commit was member of the leadership team of McKinsey & Company's Scandinavia Office where he led projects in telecom, supply chain, FMCG, and basic materials sectors in the Middle East and Europe and was an organization design expert for leading high-tech and public sector clients.

John Beadle - Program Director of Startup Weekend, has worked with numerous entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and corporations to help place talented individuals and grow early stage startups. While managing a program based in over 120 countries, he has had the opportunity to see a wide range of startup communities and has helped 100s of entrepreneurs jump start their businesses. He has worked with numerous entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, and corporations to help place talented individuals and grow early stage startups.

Rudi Dokmecioglu is the founder and CEO of tmob. tmob is the leading mobile technology company in Turkey with offices in Dubai and San Francisco and has signed under 80+ mobile apps with 100M+ downloads to date. Rudi, as an avid technology enthusiast, founded tmob in 2009 in Istanbul.

Patrick McGarvey - experienced business consultant, Principal at Commit Network, Guvenc Sozen - Project Manager at Commit Network, Senior Associate of Commit team in High-Tech Park Azerbaijan project, Paul Warren - an international business technology and media expert with the COMMIT network, Natalia Corobco - co-founder of Biznesinfo.az, one of the leading business websites in Azerbaijan and other local experts.

What is Startup Weekend?

Startup Weekend is a global grassroots movement of active and empowered entrepreneurs who are learning the basics of founding startups and launching successful ventures. It is the largest community of passionate entrepreneurs with over 400 past events in 100 countries around the world. The non-profit organization is headquartered in Seattle, Washington but Startup Weekend organizers and facilitators can be found in over 200 cities around the world. From South Africa to London to Brazil to Azerbaijan, people around the globe are coming together for weekend long workshops to pitch ideas, form teams, and start companies.

All Startup Weekend events follow the same basic model: anyone is welcome to pitch their startup idea and receive feedback from their peers. Teams organically form around the top ideas (as determined by popular vote) and then it's a 54 hour frenzy of business model creation, coding, designing, and market validation. The weekends culminate with presentations in front of local entrepreneurial leaders with another opportunity for critical feedback.

What will attendees get?

Co-Founder Dating
- Come find other like-minded people. This is probably the most valuable type of networking participants could ever do if they want to start a business.

Education
- Spend a weekend with some of the communities brightest and most creative minds. Learn a new programming language, what MVP stands for, how to build an actual strategy, get feedback from experienced mentor-entrepreneurs, and actually create & test something rather than just theorizing.

Learn How to Launch
- This is the epitome of LeanStartup Methodology at its finest. Go from idea to launch. Participants have 54 hours to figure out everything from the mission, your target market, go-to market strategies, to giving a full presentation of a hopefully working prototype and validation (or non-validation) of concept to their peers.

Actually Launch a Business - Over 36% of the Startup Weekend Startups are still alive after 3 months. Sometimes a company emerges, sometimes one doesn't. Over 10% of companies go on to produce revenue or get seed funding, but every time people leave with more experience, insight, knowledge, friends, and resources than they came with.

Food - 5 great meals and drinks are provided during the weekend... Including plenty of caffeine. We understand the importance of keeping teams together, and helping them be productive.

Fantastic opportunity to pitch to top investors - you get a real value here

Awesome gifts and awards - 6-month free space from High-Tech Park Business Incubator, free spot at Bakutell, free report for technimum.com and mak.az and other unique opportunities

Organizers and Sponsor support

Baku Startup Weekend is organized by independent experts (4 organizers include Mammad, Nail Rustam and Aziz) and global Startup Weekend forum. Major sponsors of the event include High-Tech Park (event host) and Bakcell (Gold Sponsor) other companies who supports the event include Khazar Ventures, Nubessom, Mayka.az, Bakutell and Technimum.com. More sponsors and sponsors are to be updated.

Costs

The price for the event is 35 USD. However you can pay 25 AZN if you pay at the following address: Nizami st 203, 3rd floor, AF Business House High Tech Park. Before coming please Contact Nail - one of the co-organizers for more information:

Mobile: +994557817361 or email him at baku@startupweekend.org.

Value of the event

The real value in a Startup Weekend is not how many startups are launched, though some of them do become very successful. It's more about learning through the act of creation, developing deeper relationships than a typical networking event, matching potential cofounders, validating ideas and experimenting in a risk-free environment. For many, it's about taking the first step into entrepreneurship.


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