The final selection of startups to represent Ukraine at CES 2020 took place on 17th of October at iHUB. Six companies, who will go to Las Vegas, were selected by a team of Ukrainian and foreign experts and investors. The exhibition will be held on January 7-10, 2020 in Las Vegas.
The Consumer Electronics Show (CES) is one of the largest annual technology events in the world: in 2019, it gathered more than 200,000 visitors from around the world at locations equivalent to 35 football fields.
UA TECH was established four years ago to introduce the best Ukrainian Tech products to the global market. This yearCRDF Global andUVCA invited experienced technology entrepreneurs to apply to the “Science & Entrepreneurship Technology Program” (STEP) training program and competition. The STEP is designed to encourage the development of new technology-based products and their commercialization in local and global markets, and is made possible through grants from the United States Department of State. Also DTEK - the largest private investor in Ukraine’s energy sector was the innovative sponsor of the project.
For the first time, the Ukrainian pavilion was presented at CES 2018 and it became a unique model of presentation of Ukrainian startups at such an exhibition.
For four years we have been organizing a Ukrainian pavilion during the CES. Over the years a lot has changed, and our technological achievements and professionalism have long been known all over the world. However, one thing remains the same: we always have something to surprise world and 6 winners of this year's competition improve it.
Executive Director UVCA
In total, more than 50 Ukrainian startups took part in the competition, 10 of them got to Bootcamp, held by UVCA together with CRDF, and 8 of them became finalists.
As noted, 10 selected startups had the opportunity to go through a two-day bootcamp organized by CRDF Global and UVCA. Two days of intense work with the best mentors and helpful tips. Evgeniy Krasowski - Program Manager at CRDF Global, Warren Haber - Managing Director at Exoventure Associates, Marty Kaszubowski - Executive Director for Innovation Initiatives, Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Old Dominion University, and Jane Klepa - Executive Director at 1991 Open Data Incubator helped the teams polish their pitches and shared their experience on the topics of effective communication strategies, getting ready for due diligence and how to stand out at Consumer Electronics Show 2020.
We are very grateful to our mentors and organizers for the new experience and opportunity we have received. The two days went by fast and exciting because we were actively working on refining our patch, on presenting the product itself, and on our strategy.
Among the jury of the Ukrainian selection are true professionals: experts and investors of Ukrainian and foreign investment funds - Bogdan Sviridov (AVentures Capital), Yuri Filipchuk (CYFRD), Roman Nikitov (ICU), Vitaliy M. Golomb (GS Capital), Paweł Maj (bValue), Katherina Degtyar (Crowd.Inc), Andriy Zinchuk (Demium), Dmytro Ruzhytskyi (WeFund), Oksana Prykhodko (DTEK), Emanuele Volpe (DTEK), Denis Gursky (1991 Open Data Incubator), Tatiana Sushko (Reactor). And also representatives of the organizers of the selection: Olga Afanasyeva (UVCA), Warren Haber (CRDF), Marty Kaszubowski (CRDF), Evgeniy Krasowski (CRDF), Nina Cairns (CRDF Global).
In addition to the selection to the Ukrainian pavilion during Ukraine Tech Day, there were short speeches of investors, in particular Roman Nikitov (ICU Investment Director) shared the top 5 things that an investor wants to see in a startup, and Emanuel Volpe (Chief Innovation Officer at DTEK) spoke about the specifics of cooperation with big corporation and how they can be useful to startups.
Also, Deputy Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine for IT Industry Development Oleksandr Bornyakov, visited Ukraine Tech Day.
Representatives of the co-organizers of the competition: Olga Afanasyeva (UVCA) and Natalia Artiukhovskaya (СRDF Global) spoke about the competition and further work.
WHAT WINNERS GET
In preparing UVCA and CRDF Global took on main organizational and financial responsibilities to allow startups to focus on finishing their products, work on pitches and other materials needed for a successful trip. All six CES booths have been sponsored by CRDF Global. Selected startups are awarded:
CRDF Global, founded in 1995, is an independent nonprofit organization that promotes international scientific and technical collaboration through grants, technical resources and training, and services. Based in Arlington, Virginia with offices in the Eurasia and MENA regions, CRDF Global works with more than 40 countries in the Middle East, North Africa, Eurasia, and Asia.
Ukrainian Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (UVCA) has been established in mid-2014 by the example of the European Venture Capital and Private Equity Association (InvestEurope), and currently unites 50 members - private equity and venture funds, accelerators, incubators, educational institutions, and non-government organisations that make significant impact on the development of Ukrainian investment market. Association promotes investment opportunities in Ukraine for foreign investment funds, conducts market research, lobbies laws for improving investment and business climate, implements Invest in Ukraine activity.
DTEK is the largest private investor in Ukraine’s energy sector. DTEK Group produces coal and natural gas, generates electricity at the coal-fired, solar and wind power plants, distributes electricity, supplies electricity to end consumers and provides energy efficient solutions.