Latvian tech conference spawns eight new start-up businesses

A business conference held in Rīga in April has spawned eight new startup companies, organizers claim.

The second international Magnetic Latvia Deep Tech Atelier technology conference organised by the Latvian Investment and Development Agency (LIAA) was held in Riga from April 12th - 13th, gathering more than 600 participants from 25 countries.

"During the Commercialization Reactor Ignition Event eight new science-based tech companies were created, Deep Tech Atelier participants received industry expert consultations about the commercialization of science, and there were more than 80 business meetings," according to a release from the organizers.

“Today, when the world is no longer imaginable without technologies, deep technologies specifically are gaining new social relevance, because of the new investment opportunities they're creating new. Here we're like the intermediary between scientists and entrepreneurs, and our goal is to offer practical knowledge and meeting opportunities, which result in the creation of new teams and startups. Government support is crucial for deep technology development,” said LIAA Technology Department Director Edgars Babris.

China was particularly prominent at the event. During Deep Tech Atelier the Beijing Belt and Road International Co-incubator (China), the ASEM Cooperation Center for Science, Technology and Innovation (China) and the Association of Technology and Startup Transfer (Latvia) signed a cooperation memorandum promoting closer cooperation in the transfer of technology, investment and knowledge between Latvia and China.

This year all Deep Tech Atelier startup competition semi-finalists won awards from the main conference partners and supporters. The Schaeffler AG main prize - an all-inclusive trip to the Schaeffler 3rd Venture Forum in Germany was won by car monitoring system creator “SIZZAPP” (Latvia) and label verification manufacturer “InLable” (Latvia).

In turn, the Commercialization Reactor main prize - 10 000 EUR in pre-seed investment and participation in a 3-month acceleration programme with the possibility of obtaining a further 40 000 EUR in pre-seed investment and up to 250 000 EUR in seed investment was won by two businesses - green industry innovator “AB Labs” (Latvia) and “Vigo” (Latvia), which is developing software to help patients have a more effective recovery after a stroke. Participation in the EIT RawMaterials Phase 1 Acceleration Programme and the Innovation Network for Advanced Materials INAM award - one year of free startup membership was won by 3D printing materials producer “3D Strong” (Latvia). The EnergySpin accelerator prize - direct access to the selection days and EnergySpin 2019 fall programme was won by “Empyrio” (Latvia), which provides a a compact autonomous sewage sludge mono-incinerator for waste containing over 80% moisture.

The Merck accelerator main prize - one gold card for the Merck Accelerator Programme Selection Days was won by “COWOW” (Latvia), developer of an IoT system assisting farmers in detecting clinical and sub-clinical mastitis of cows on microbiological level.

Deep Tech Atelier 2020 will be held next year from April 17th -18th.

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