From Russia With Love: Startup Focus Forum Review

Written by Inna Tokarev, SAP Co-Innovation Lab, Israel

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Mid-September is a great time to visit Russia. After first signs of the autumn in late August, the nature gives summer another chance with what Russians refer as “Babye Leto”, Germans as “Altweibersommer” and Americans as “Indian Summer”. In any case, both the weather and the Russian start-up community gave  us a very warm welcome.

This is the second time an SAP Startup Forum has taken place in CIS. This time, St. Petersburg followed Moscow to host two busy days of talks, discussions, startup pitches and hands-on exercises. HANA Co-Innovation Lab Israel joined the EMEA team of SAP Startup Focus Program to deliver the program content and the technical bootcamp sessions.

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The first day was dedicated to the overview of SAP Startup Focus program, SAP Cloud Platform powered by HANA, and the Go-to-Market for the startups decided to join the program. In addition, the local VCs and startup incubators, represented by Ivan Kireev (Skolkovo IT Cluster), Alfiya Muhametova (iDealMachine), Lyubov Simonova (Almaz Capital Partners), covered the topics of raising capital and the “hot” areas, such as IoT.

St. Pete was great, but we had a lot waiting for us in Moscow, so we caught the bullet train (240 km/h!) between the cultural and the administrative capitals of Russia.

In Moscow, we had another full house. The forum was attended by guest speakers from Maxfield Capital, Development FundSkolkovo , Almaz Capital and, of course, pitches by the promising startups BitCalm (DR-as-a-Service), Pain Tracker (IoT meets Patient Journal), SPIRIT Navigation (3D GPS for Indoor), Allied innovations (Predicitve Models in Oncology), Cash Off (Mint meets Groupon), and Socmedica (Medical Insurance Risk Management).

This busy week ended up with a great event #bigdatarussia in the dynamic co-working space DigitalTelegraph occupying the top store of the historical central telegraph building in the heart of Moscow dozens of meters from the Red Square and Bolshoy Theater. The agenda was packed with philosophical panels on the future of computing (ontology meets AR, data privacy and ownership etc.), dozen pitches and the highlight of the Startup Accelerator program launched by SAP University Alliances CIS.

All stories come to an end, and so too our journey at Russia.

We are already getting some love and great feedback from the participants and press. So, до новых встреч!

This post originally appeared on SAP SCN. View the original post here