Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

H2020

WELCOME Report Summary

Project ID: 644286
Funded under: H2020-EU.2.1.1.3.

Periodic Reporting for period 3 - WELCOME (WELCOME: PAN-EUROPEAN WEB ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND STARTUP ECOSYSTEM)

Reporting period: 2016-05-01 to 2016-12-31

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

WELCOME is working hard to break down the barriers between 5 different major EU startup ecosystems (Berlin, Dublin, Milan, Madrid and Salamanca). Teaming up with local partners present in these ecosystems to identify and engage the most relevant players of the tech entrepreneurial world (e.g. investors, mentors, media, corporates, successful entrepreneurs, etc.) and connect them with prospective, emerging and successful tech startups. In addition WELCOME also aims to bridge the divide between the tech entrepreneurial world and policy makers. Furthermore, WELCOME is connecting Europe with Silicon Valley and thus offering more opportunities for tech startups to truly go global.

1. To create a Pan­‐European tech entrepreneurship ecosystem, based on 5 different major EU local ecosystems (Berlin, Dublin, Milan and Madrid/Salamanca areas), identifying and connecting the most relevant players (e.g. investors, mentors, corporates, media, successful tech entrepreneurs) with prospective tech entrepreneurs, emerging and successful startups, in which every tech entrepreneur in one of the local ecosystems feels that they belongs to WELCOME ecosystem.
2. To bring the best players of each local ecosystem into the WELCOME Pan­‐European Ecosystem by providing them with the best support and services to efficiently launch and scale up their operations across EU, exposing them to new financing opportunities and linking tech entrepreneurs with key actors to increase the number of business relationships between startups and existing companies as well as investments in startups and acquisitions by medium and large corporates.
3. To achieve a great impact in the five local ecosystems, by means of the extensive networks of contacts (e.g. investors, mentors, corporates, media) that the WELCOME partners provide.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

Summary of the most important milestones and achievements since the beginning of the project:

WP2
Hackathons (Leader: CODE)
14 HACKATHONS, +1800 ATTENDEES, 126 LOCAL TEAMS
Workshops (Leader: ETVENTURE)
61WORKSHOPS, +7800 ATTENDEES
Visual Map (Leader: TETUAN)
5 CITIES REPRESENTED, +670STARTUPS MAPPED, +1000 KEY PLAYERS MAPPED
Startup Europe University Network (Leader: BISA)
35 UNIVERSITIES INVOLVED, 18 COUNTRIES REPRESENTED

WP3
Cross-border mentorship (Leader: DPIXEL)
2 BATCHES OF 8 STARTUPS EACH
1 WEEK AT DCU RYANACADEMY, 35 ATTENDEES
Roadshows (exposure to investors) (Leader: DPIXEL)
2 BATCHES
16 STARTUPS SELCTED
4 WELCOME ECOSYSTEMS VISITED PER BATCH
Workshops for Early Stage Startups (Leader: DPIXEL)
18 WORKSHOPS ORGANIZED
2719 ATTENDEES, 660 STARTUPS
Europass Program (Leader: RYAN)
72 COMPANIES SELECTED FOR EUROPASS
10 EVENTS ATTENDEED 2015/16
To connect EU with the Silicon Valley (for Early Stage Startups (Leader: MTB)
17 STARTUPS SELECTED
53 STRATEGIC CONTACTS PER STARTUP
Crowd-funding access portal (Leader: S&I)
LAUNCHED
150 PLATFORMS ONLINE
Accelerator Assembly (Leader: BISA)
ACCELERATOR ASSEMBLY
182 ACCELERATORS ATTENDEES
2 CONFERENCES + 4 MEETUPS

WP4
Matchmaking events with investors, corporates and startups (Leader: MTB)
90+ startups joined 8 matchmaking events over the 2-year program
50 investors, 30+ corporates, 300+ meetings, 11M capital raised
Connect EU with the Silicon Valley (for Late Stage Startups) (Leader: MTB)
11 startups attending EID + free attendance to Startup School program in San Francisco + GRANT
SE Unicorn forum formed by “Billion-­Euro” startups (Leader: DPIXEL)
3 meetings, public launch of Single Startup Market Manifesto
Startup Europe Nation High Level Group (Leader: BISITE)
Closed door meetings with 6 Member state representatives

WP5
Activities for WELCOME self-­‐sustainability (Leader: BISITE)
Database of potential sponsors including 1000+ individuals
11 activities will be continued after the project ends
Foster collaboration with Startup Europe Initiative (Leader: MTB)
Collaboration with SE in 25+ ACTIVITIES

WP6
Dissemination:
User friendly website with 100k visits, WELCOME storytelling video, 2000+ Twitter, 1000+ Facebook, monthly newsletter, 13 Success Stories, 15 Exhibitions, 325+ press releases/publications

WPSES
2 SES conferences, 5 Mini SES, 1 Large Scale Hackathon, 8 workshops, 3 early stage roadshows, 2 early stage award celebrations, 7 late stage roadshow stops, 10 meetups, 2 Oscars celebrations, 68 hours of video content online

This translates into +142 events already organised with +1978 startups taking part, counting +15354 total participants.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

WELCOME's main impact to startups has been the support to their fundraising activities. Average minimum time from lead to investment verified through WELCOME’s startups has been around 1 year.
• Direct + Indirect impact
o Direct impact is fostered through specific matching actions and a relevant boost in visibility provided to the startup company so to generate concrete funding opportunities that get completed in a significant amount of time (e.g. Meritocracy meeting United Ventures at Welcome Matchmaking in Milan 2015, then closing a €500K funding round with United later in the year)
o Indirect impact is fostered through a continuous activity of providing matching opportunities, increased visibility (also on the press) and access to large/hi-quality events and sessions, thus concretely increasing the interest over the specific startups. Although – in these cases – Welcome didn’t directly “matched” the company with the specific investor that closed the deal, it is reasonable to affirm that Welcome acted as a catalyst in promoting the company and driving market interest towards the specific startup (e.g. Artomatix getting access to top sessions and networking opportunities in Silicon Valley and in the EU, then getting back to EU and be able to raise significant funds).
• Network Effect
o Welcome and Startup Europe as a community quickly became a point of reference for many EU top-performing companies, including several scaleups and Unicorn companies that participated to industry-leading events powered by Welcome activities e.g. Startup Europe Summit (SES). Some top companies including e.g. BlaBlaCar, in this case, reportedly received huge rounds of funding during the last reporting period. While these rounds cannot be reasonably considered as strictly and directly fostered by Welcome actions and/or partners, these numbers are still very much relevant to be shared in order to demonstrate:
 Quality of Welcome events and activities (providing consistent networking support and community actions to leading EU startups, fostering connections through Welcome)
 Quality of Welcome communication, events and sessions and selection/filtering processes (attracting top-performing EU companies)

As a sum of all impact effects (direct+indirect and network), startups that joined the big Welcome community have raised over 660.000.000 €.
Naturally all of the investment cannot be as a direct result of the WELCOME projects involvement but certainly in quite a few of the cases (direct+indirect effect) it has played an important role in it.
Many startups also joined Welcome activities later in 2016. Considering results generated between 2015 and 2016, as part of natural growth opportunities, it is reasonable to expect a substantial increase in capital raised by Welcome-supported startups in the following years after the projects end.

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