“Latvia is the first country in the world to put forward the initiative to officially recognize September 12th as Startup Day. We want to show that Latvia is a startup-friendly, technologically developed, digitally smart and open country. We're inviting all technological innovation enthusiasts to actively get involved,” said Digital Freedom Festival Co-founder Dagnija Lejiņa in a release about planned events.
There are currently more than 300 startups registered in Latvia, which have attracted EUR 62 million in investments over last year.
Startup Day morning will kick off with a “Business Breakfast” at the University of Latvia Business Incubator at 9:00 and presentations will begin at 10:00.
The second “Startup Community Forum” will be held at the VEF Quarter at 13:00 to promote dialogue between startups, public, private and academic sector representatives and nongovernmental organisations. The main topic of the forum is startup cooperation with large corporations and the state.
Latvian Startup Association Startin.lv Managing Director Aļona Beļinska said: “Startup Day recognition is important to the community. It helps to educate society and turn the attention of a wider audience to startups. The program will inform and motivate young people to think about career opportunities in the startup ecosystem, to found their own company, find internships or full-time jobs with startups or NGOs that are actively involved in the processes. At the same time, it's important for the development of the startup ecosystem to also develop relationships with government institutions and private companies.”
The closing festivities will take place from 18:00 until midnight at the AUTENTIKA cultural space on 2 Bruņinieku street and will include something called Fuck-up Nights Riga Startup Edition, where attendees will be able to listen to startup failure stories in a relaxed atmosphere and learn from other people's mistakes.