Tech

Locals share why Vilnius, Lithuania is becoming an international startup hub – TechCrunch


There are loads of causes why Vilnius, Lithuania’s capital metropolis, has an more and more seen startup sector. The nation’s startup-friendly regulatory atmosphere, an exquisite medieval city middle, over 20 enterprise hubs and accelerators and powerful rankings in mental property manufacturing are most evident at a excessive stage. But what are the locals enthusiastic about on the bottom?

Our survey respondents stated town was robust throughout a broad vary of tech industries, notably these with sensible functions: cybersecurity, power and sustainability, fintech, well being care and medtech, edtech and silver tech amongst others.

Respondents stated the impact of the pandemic on working practices would imply that many expats could be shifting again to town, which is reasonably priced, and extra overseas corporations are relocating there attributable to favorable authorities insurance policies, though “rental prices are going through the roof.”

In addition, the oppressive regime in close by Belarus has supplied an inflow of great tech corporations, resembling Wargaming, in addition to the related expertise.

In 5 years, respondents stated town and nation will proceed to generate and entice nice tech startups, but in addition tech expertise and entrepreneurs. However, one stated: “The ecosystem still lacks local funding for the late Series A and beyond rounds.”

We surveyed:

• Gerda Sakalauskaitė, managing director, The Lithuanian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association

Lukas Inokaitis, enterprise growth, NFQ Technologies

Andrius Milinavicius, founder, Baltic Sandbox

• Gytenis Galkis, associate, 70V

• Gabriele Poteliunaite, affiliate, Change Ventures

• Rokas Tamošiūnas, associate, Open Circle Capital

• Donatas Keras, founding associate, Practica Capital

• Tomas Martunas, founding associate, Iron Wolf Capital

• Alex Gibb, associate, Katalista Ventures

• Jone Vaituleviciute, associate, Startup Wise Guys

• Lukas Kaminskis, CEO, Turing College


Gerda Sakalauskaitė, managing director, The Lithuanian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
The Vilnius startup ecosystem is primarily dominated by startups growing enterprise administration techniques (B2B, SaaS) and monetary applied sciences. Vilnius is becoming a stable scorching spot of fintech corporations in Europe having greater than 200 fintech corporations established right here. Other rising industries could be deep tech, life sciences, mobility, and the sport trade.

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
Vinted (first Lithuanian unicorn, secondhand style online market which raised €128 million in an fairness funding spherical, valuing the corporate at over €1 billion in 2019).
Other notable startups: NordVPN, CGTrader, TransferGo, Trafi, Kilo Health, CityBee, Brolis Semiconductors, PIXEVIA, Oxipit.
Rising stars that additionally ought to be checked out: PVcase, Droplet Genomics, ZITICITY.

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?
I believe native tech buyers are taking extra dangers and becoming world scene gamers. Investors had their 10 years of market expertise and now they’re prepared to take a position into concepts and companies that might change the worldwide scene and even deal with points as complicated as they arrive — environmental, biotechnology or deep tech industries. Moreover, the native investor group is fairly dynamic. We search to have our investor panorama as various as attainable, so we’re working towards gender equality in VC and different essential range causes to perform that.

With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
I believe COVID-19 created extra alternatives for Vilnius than dangers on this regard. The coronavirus disaster, basically, hasn’t affected the Vilnius startup ecosystem in the identical means as the remainder of Europe. In addition, Vilnius has made headlines worldwide with its artistic options to deal with the pandemic challenges. For occasion, Vilnius grew to become one giant open air cafe. This reveals Vilnius being a unusual, hip and attention-grabbing metropolis to reside in, so we predict extra expats to put their eyes on Vilnius. Especially expats from our Eastern neighbors who’re negatively affected by an ongoing political disaster (Belarus).

Who are the important thing startup folks in your metropolis (e.g., buyers, founders, legal professionals, designers, and so forth.)?
Founders:
Justas Janauskas, Milda Mitkutė, Mantas Mikuckas (Vinted)
Henrikas Urbonas, Simona Andrijauskaitė (Interactio)
Dalia Lašaite (CGTrader)
Tomas Okmanas, Eimantas Sabaliauskas (Tesonet)
Tadas Burgaila (Kilo Health)
Daumantas Dvilinskas (TransferGo; Forbes 30 underneath 30)
Martynas Gudonavičius (Trafi)
VC buyers:
Rokas Peciulaitis (Contrarian Ventures)
Donatas Keras (Practica Capital), Arvydas Bložė (Practica Capital)
Jone Vaituleviciute, Dmitrij Susunov (Startup Wise Guys)
Kasparas Jurgelionis (Iron Wolf Capital)
Gytenis Galkis (70Ventures)
Viktorija Vaitkevičienė (Coinvest)
Legal specialists:
Rūta Armone (Ellex)
Akvilė Bosaite (COBALT Legal)
Eva Suduiko (COBALT Legal)
Mantas Petkevičius (Sorainen)
Laimonas Skibarka (Sorainen)
Linas Sabaliauskas (TRINITI JUREX)
Andrius Ivanauskas (GLIMSTEDT)

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
Vilnius will certainly achieve momentum because the tech startup metropolis of the area. The variety of startup folks they make use of will develop exponentially. We could have one or two additional unicorns born right here. And after all fairly extra overseas expertise coming to Vilnius to work in startups!

Lukas Inokaitis, enterprise growth, NFQ Technologies

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
Mobility, fintech, power, cybersecurity, healthcare. Weak in AI, knowledge science.

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
Vinted, Tesonet, Kilo Health, Pored Banda, Hostinger.

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?

Local and with small funds, largely sponsored by authorities and EU. Need giant personal ones and extra angel buyers.

With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
The metropolis [has been] rising for a decade every year. No cause to decelerate as extra international expertise is shifting to Vilnius from different EU and Asian nations.

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
One-two unicorns yearly and main EU in fintech, mobility and power.

Andrius Milinavicius, founder, Baltic Sandbox

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
Sustainability, silver tech, ladies in tech.

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
Tesonet (NordVPN), Vinted, Traffi, Kilo Health.

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?

Deep tech, SaaS, sustainability.

With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
Everyone stays. Vilnius is a really inexperienced and vibrant ecosystem, with a number of co-working [locations] and easy accessibility to forests, parks and close by lakes.

Who are the important thing startup folks in your metropolis (e.g., buyers, founders, legal professionals, designers, and so forth.)?

Many of them, ranging from Contrarian Ventures — Rokas Peciulaitis, Practica Capital — Arvydas Bloze, persevering with to Tesonet co-founder — Tomas Okmanas, Eimantas Sabaliauskas, adopted with Kilo Health — Tadas Burgaila and extra.

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
4x at the very least. Very speedy progress


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Gytenis Galkis, associate, 70V

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
1. Lithuania is now fourth within the world fintech rating after the U,S,, the U,Ok, and Singapore.
2. Lithuania’s life sciences sector is gaining prominence.
3. Life sciences corporations in Lithuania are among the many most worthwhile within the nation, with 90% of their output exported worldwide, but the market stays unsaturated. Lithuania is sixteenth within the Global Innovation in Biotechnology rating in keeping with Scientific American WORLDVIEW international biotechnology rating 2019.

According to McKinsey examine on B2B startups, Lithuania’s B2B startups generate extra worth per funding than the U.S. and different European counterparts, ensuing within the highest capital effectivity within the area!

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
Larger ones could be: Vinted, Tesonet, Kilo Health, Bored Panda, Brolis Semiconductors, Cujo. Interactio just lately has raised a $31 million Series A spherical — the biggest ever Series A for a corporation headquartered within the Baltics. Upcoming stars: Whatagraph, Ondato, ZITICITY, Eneba, Robolabs, CAST AI, Foros, Billo, Biomatter Designs, #walk15, Boommio.

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?

The tech funding ecosystem has been evolving very quickly in the course of the previous 5 years. The early-stage corporations are capable of get funding from the Lithuanian Business Angel Network (LitBAN), which unites over 150 lively personal buyers. Coinvest Capital invests alongside angel buyers and offers them profitable leverage. This is how the Lithuanian authorities helps the angel ecosystem. Then there are two lively accelerators — 70V (Revenue Accelerator) and Startup Wise Guys offering funding within the pre-seed/seed phases. Other native funds — Practica Capital, Iron Wolf Capital, Verslo Angelu Fondas and Open Circle Capital present seed and Series A funding. The ecosystem nonetheless lacks native funding for the late collection A and past rounds. Most of it is lined by overseas funds. The native ecosystem is too small to have a selected focus. However, I’d say that loads of focus goes to B2B/enterprise software program.

With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
Since 2012 Vilnius’ inhabitants has been steadily rising 0.3% yearly. I imagine that in COVID and occasions associated to Belarus have even additional boosted the expansion of Vilnius, particularly when it comes to the tech ecosystem. There had been main strikes from Minsk to Vilnius. For instance, Wargaming has moved a big quantity of their workers with households to Vilnius and even purchased 76 luxurious flats in downtown Vilnius. Other Belarusian corporations are following. Furthermore, Vilnius is one of many greenest capitals in Europe with a novel medieval outdated city, which makes it one of many coziest locations to reside. It is estimated that Lithuania nonetheless lacks over 10,000 tech abilities, which may very well be an excellent alternative for savvy explorers to affix the quickly rising tech scene!

Who are the important thing startup folks in your metropolis (e.g., buyers, founders, legal professionals, designers, and so forth.)?
Vilnius is a small city and it is effectively related, there are lots of people that made this ecosystem flourish. Just to call a number of: Jean-Baptiste Daguenè, Donatas Keras, Mantas Mikuckas, Tomas Okmanas, Rita Sakus, Vladas Lašas, Viktorija Vaitkevičienė, Tomas Martunas, Dmitrij Sosunov, Evaldas Remeikis, Evaldas Petraitis, and lots of extra that I ought to point out.

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
I strongly imagine that Vilnius will additional broaden on its distinctive angle of tech entrepreneurship. I strongly estimate additional progress in fintech, life sciences and B2B ecosystem. In my imaginative and prescient, I imagine exports pushed by Lithuanian startups will at the very least double inside the subsequent 5 years whereas bringing a number of new unicorns.

Gabriele Poteliunaite, affiliate, Change Ventures

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
Well, in all probability most individuals will give the identical reply, however Vilnius is large on fintech. However, I’d additionally go on to spotlight different prospering sectors, resembling edtech, AI-driven corporations, medtech, power tech — you identify it … There are quite a few sectors that we’re fairly robust in. As a generalist investor, we’re largely enthusiastic about pushed and passionate founders. This brings me to a different level that I’d say the weakest hyperlink of the ecosystem is lack of entrepreneurial coaching and lack of academic initiatives inspiring children (and never solely) to go on to discovered their very own corporations and take dangers. Risk aversiveness is the important thing weak spot right here. We are nonetheless missing large success tales, however this is slowly altering (Vinted, Tesonet).

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
Interactio, Vinted, Memby and so many others — might go on itemizing them for days.

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?

As it is a really tight-knit group, native tech buyers are very collaborative and useful with one another and entrepreneurs. However, I’d say the principle areas native buyers nonetheless want to enhance on is internationalizing and diversifying their funding groups (it’s 2021 already) and discouraging founders to be aggressive of their growth to overseas markets and considering globally very early on. Most buyers are generalists, specializing in all three Baltic nations and doing largely seed investments in software program (some {hardware}) B2B corporations.

With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
STAY and MOVE IN — no query there! I believe COVID-19 pandemic has been an excellent stimulus for many expats — together with myself, to maneuver again to Vilnius and be a part of forces in constructing this flourishing ecosystem. As far as I can inform, most individuals will keep, (rental costs are going by means of the roof) and extra overseas corporations are relocating right here attributable to very favorable insurance policies.

Who are the important thing startup folks in your metropolis (e.g., buyers, founders, legal professionals, designers, and so forth.)?
Ugh, so many nice folks to spotlight … which is clearly an indication that Vilnius has merely an overwhelming variety of absolute stars! (Not a biased opinion clearly.)

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
I’d enterprise to say one thing as daring as Vilnius becoming the worldwide chief in producing and attracting not solely world-class tech startups, but in addition tech expertise and excellent entrepreneurs. I is likely to be getting a tad too excited, however I see a lot authenticity on this area — and if we handle to cherish it, we might go actually far!

Rokas Tamošiūnas, associate, Open Circle Capital

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
Strong: Marketplaces, fintech, life sciences, tech range (prop, fin, gov, mobility, AI). Weak: Internationalization, gross sales, advertising and marketing.

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
Vinted, Tesonet, Traffi, Omnisend, Billo, Whatagraph.

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?

We have some generalists (Practica Capital), deep tech (Open Circle Capital and Iron Wolf Capital), inexperienced/power (Contrarian Ventures) and accelerators (70ventures and Startup Wise Guys).
Investors are nonetheless early pre-seed/seed however are steadily maturing up. ICT (particularly AI) nonetheless dominates, however different areas, resembling photonics (lasers), new house and others.

With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
Gradually everybody moved to full take away within the tech group. Now individuals are again in workplaces (and largely having fun with it), however I believe most corporations will do a combined mannequin to any extent further. Remote working did loads of good in recognizing digital groups and particularly groups which have members primarily based in several nations.

Who are the important thing startup folks in your metropolis (e.g., buyers, founders, legal professionals, designers, and so forth.)?
Top are startup founders like J. Janauskas from Vinted, T. Okman from Tesonet, R. Lauris from Omnisend.

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
We are happening a patch of range — dozens of microecosystems of various tech. I believe we could have a really colourful scene in a number of years.

Donatas Keras, founding associate, Practica Capital

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
As our younger tech ecosystem matures, we will see an rising variety of startups from totally different trade sectors which are based and headquartered in Vilnius are becoming world leaders of their classes. If we glance extra intently at particular industries, I’d spotlight:
Marketplaces (Vinted, CGTrader, Ovoko); cybersecurity (NordVPN); fintech (TransferGo, Ondato, Revolut EU headquarters); gaming (Nordcurrent, Game Insight, Wargaming); mobility (Trafi, ZITICITY); biotechnology (Biomatter Designs, Droplet Genomics); house (NanoAvionics); well being tech (Kilo Health, Oxipit).
The strengths of our tech ecosystem are the quick progress of startups, world first mindset, search for innovation and the resilience of the founders. And these are a few of the issues that excite me as an investor. Of course, with such quick progress, we will already see rising competitors for native expertise. That will be thought-about as a weak spot, which ought to be addressed proper now on the state stage.

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
The most notable startups are – Vinted (The first Lithuanian unicorn), NordVPN, CGTrader, Interactio, TransferGo, Trafi, Kilo Health, CarVertical, Omnisend and lots of extra. But I’d additionally like to say a few of the rising stars that we must always not overlook: Ondato, Ovoko, Biomatter Designs, Droplet Genomics, ZITICITY.

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?

The funding scene reveals the identical indicators of maturing as the entire ecosystem. And that is noticeable in any respect funding phases. It appears that now we’re beginning to “pick the fruits” of 10 years of arduous work — corporations becoming way more fundable, and buyers are likely to take dangers and are extra prepared to take action. Business angels are becoming extra lively than ever, with 100+ offers made per 12 months. And if a number of years again the bulk had been skilled entrepreneurs of the so-called “old economy,” now an rising variety of tech entrepreneurs are choosing up and investing in new startups on the very early stage. Business accelerators and pre-seed funds additionally taking part in an essential position within the growth of the ecosystem. They are largely backed by the federal government and have become very lively within the final 3-4 years. Most notable: 70ventures, Startup Wise Guys, Baltic Sandbox.
Venture capital has round 10+ years of historical past in Vilnius and Lithuania. First, it was stimulated by EIF and the state cash, now it’s choosing up strongly and performs a vital position in startups growth at an early stage.
Most notable VCs:
Practica Capital is one of the skilled and most lively VCs in Vilnius and the entire area. With 10+ years of historical past, it grew along with the ecosystem, startups and the founders proper from the beginning. The most notable offers are — Interactio, TransferGo, CGTrader, Trafi, Eneba, PVcase. The workforce has a excessive stage of know-how and confirmed document in fintech, mobility, SaaS, marketplaces.
Open Circle Capital and Iron Wolf Capital are first-time funds, each lively and doing job.
Contrarian Ventures is a small however lively “green” tech-focused VC making a noticeable mark within the growth of the ecosystem too.
Regional and international colleagues are additionally current on the occasions and co-investing fairly actively with native buyers (Karma Ventures, Trind VC, Change Ventures, Tera VC, ZGI and world powerhouses resembling Intel, Accel, Creandum, Insight Venture Partners, Inreach).
Most of the VCs are generalists and searching right into a broad spectrum of startups lively in several sectors, with a number of exceptions. Of course, a few of the buyers have a better-proven document in some classes than others.

With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
Lithuania is a small nation, and Vilnius being the capital metropolis, is nonetheless the middle of attraction of every part within the nation, and expertise is not an exception. With additional growth and progress of the tech ecosystem, much more expertise might be drawn to Vilnius. It is an excellent metropolis to reside in, work and construct world tech corporations.

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
We could have greater than 5 unicorns born/raised right here, and Vilnius will turn into one of many European “hot spots” for tech investing. The tech ecosystem will develop at the very least thrice. Vilnius will turn into a middle of attraction for expertise from all of the area, CIS and different elements of Europe.

Tomas Martunas, founding associate, Iron Wolf Capital

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
Lithuania, and particularly Vilnius, has established a really robust place in fintech being the No. 4 in Global Fintech Ranking. Vilnius has created a positive atmosphere for fintech startups to be established and developed, and managed to draw one of many largest fintech gamers, Revolut. Vilnius is additionally particularly superior within the laser trade. While lasers represent solely a small a part of Lithuania’s export, their high quality is making the nation well-known around the globe. It is very thrilling because the demand for lasers is forecasted to solely improve. We imagine that Lithuania’s laser trade has a really constructive outlook and thus, we invested in laser producer Litilit. Vilnius additionally boasts many robust SaaS startups with, for instance, Interactio, which just lately raised $30 million after seeing 12x progress between 2019 and 2020. I imagine there is nonetheless loads of untapped potential in deep tech and edtech within the Vilnius ecosystem and it is beginning to uncover. With the Wargaming workplace opening, additionally along with the Unity department, Game Insights workplace and impartial sport studios, the gaming cluster has good fundamentals to blossom.

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
Vinted, Tesonet, Turing College, Omnisend, Millo Appliances, NanoAvionics, Pixevia, Monimoto, Redtrack.io, Interactio, Litilit, Foros.

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?

First, there are important sums of EU funding obtainable for early-stage startups, particularly for those having a powerful technical basis and revolutionary options. Overall, the Vilnius ecosystem has grown considerably over the previous 5 years with many extra VCs being established, a powerful enterprise angels community (LitBAN), accelerators launched and extra focus devoted to early stage and bolder funding concepts.
Many buyers stay centered on the Baltics and CEE and nonetheless have some option to go to determine extra world mindsets which are extra prevalent in Nordics and Western Europe. But the Vilnius ecosystem is nonetheless rising and extra overseas buyers coming into reveals the attractiveness of the ecosystem on this means additionally offering founders with extra alternatives.

With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
Vilnius is a really enticing vacation spot. It boasts reasonably priced housing (which many European capitals can’t supply), and when COVID-19 is reshaping our lives to distant work becoming a regular, many individuals will transfer out of high-priced cities to extra reasonably priced ones, resembling Vilnius. Also, it is an revolutionary metropolis that has superior rather a lot to simply evaluate with different European capitals (and overtake a few of them) when it comes to lifestyle and profession alternatives.

Who are the important thing startup folks in your metropolis (e.g., buyers, founders, legal professionals, designers, and so forth.)?
Mantas Mikuckas, Tomas Okmanas, Eimantas Sabaliauskas, Toma Sabaliauskiene, Rytis Lauris, Vladas Lašas, Rita Sakus, Tadas Burgaila, Inga Langaitė, Roberta Rudokiene and naturally Iron Wolf Capital founders 😉

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
I imagine that Vilnius will proceed on rising and advancing to turn into one of many key European startup hubs. With favorable enterprise situations and lifestyle it is anticipated to draw extra abilities who will contribute to fostering the ecosystem. However, Lithuania is already experiencing a mind drain and will take some particular efforts to convey abilities again and retain them.

Alex Gibb, associate, Katalista Ventures

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
We’ve seen an explosion of corporations offshoring from Scandinavia over the previous 10+ years in LT, which has led to the expansion of competence facilities and specialist R&D amenities for intangible providers. I’m excited by the tech sector’s progress, which is primarily software program, growth and engineering.  We’re too small to essentially have particular sectors however lasers have a trusted pedigree in LT.

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
Cogastro is servicing insect farms with CRM techniques — that’s fairly authentic and area of interest! Bored Panda was No. 1 on the App Store final 12 months and continues to increase, Tinggly (disclosure — I’m a co-founder) is rising once more quickly after COVID, serving the U.S. market primarily. Vinted is after all head and shoulders above the others — each in valuation phrases, but in addition the constructive influence on recycling and reusing.

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?

We have a rising angel community with LitBAN that is boosted by the federal government’s co-invest fund — which just lately facilitated a 34x return for early buyers in Interactio. There is vary of early-stage VCs on the town, the hole comes within the 2 million+ house the place startups have to go overseas for deeper pockets. The focus tends to be B2B however as we’re a small geography there are only a few buyers with a good sector focus.

With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
Move in! Vilnius is a compact and funky metropolis [with a] top quality of life right here and [it’s] straightforward to get out to the lakes and forests to loosen up. I nonetheless suppose we’re determining the hybrid nature of labor from right here onward, so folks will combine and match to what fits their life. The constructive shift is extra energy to workers and employers taking into consideration what workers want for constructive psychological well being.

Who are the important thing startup folks in your metropolis (e.g., buyers, founders, legal professionals, designers, and so forth.)?
Greta Monstavice, CEO at Katalista Ventures — she’s high of the tree on all issues sustainability associated and captivated with empowering startups. JB Daguené at 70V is powering B2B startups with explosive progress instruments. Sarune Smalakyte, head of Rockit, is nurturing fintech corporations at their co-working house and blasting out many nice (free) occasions for the group.

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
I’m excited concerning the metropolis’s prospects. We have rather a lot forward of us with many new startups coming by means of. The key problem might be to get the subsequent technology of tech expertise educated correctly and prepared for the calls for of an already squeezed workforce.

Jone Vaituleviciute, associate, Startup Wise Guys

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
Vilnius is after all identified on a world scale for its fintech ecosystem — although the vast majority of fintech “perks” come on a governmental/nation stage, Vilnius boasts a excessive variety of banking, insurance coverage and different monetary providers professionals, in addition to fintech-focused startup hubs and plenty of occasions. I’m notably excited to see plenty of huge overseas names (e.g., Revolut, SumUp and lots of different) shifting their operations right here; this manner increase the ecosystem and stage of fintech professionals. Gaming, edtech are additionally a number of different up-and-coming areas, which alerts that B2C is becoming extra traditional than not. On the development aspect, we nonetheless haven’t discovered the right way to embrace deep tech/R&D startups into the ecosystem and funding mechanisms. This is a problem many cities have, however we hope Vilnius will transfer to the best course, due to collaborations amongst universities and enterprise capital funds.

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
Well-known names: Vinted, Trafi, TransferGo and a number of other not backed by enterprise capital — Bored Panda, Kilo Health.
Up-and-coming: ZITICITY (mobility), kevin. (fintech), Ondato (fintech), Turing College (edtech).

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?

Vilnius is illustration of all Baltic enterprise capital ecosystems. We have a number of pre-seed/seed stage enterprise capital funds which are coming in with expertise and good understanding of varied verticals. However, for a very long time we lacked a correct early-stage funding ecosystem. This is altering proper now with accelerators supporting idea-stage startups and plenty of enterprise angels showing from profitable startups who’re prepared to take a position respectable tickets resembling extra Western Europe somewhat than Baltic funding tendencies.
With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
I imagine the pandemic has been somewhat favorable for small ecosystems like Vilnius. Mainly as a result of distant investing/pitching/promoting grew to become an absolute norm and founders would not have to fly a whole bunch of miles for an occasion or a gathering to shut a deal. Thus, I see many entrepreneurs sticking to Vilnius attributable to its nice life high quality and well-knitted ecosystem.

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
We ought to be speaking pre-seed/seed on the identical stage as West Europe and even the U.S. We are catching up with the usual, however with the maturity of the enterprise capital ecosystem, Vilnius ought to be an ideal metropolis to kick-start your startup and take it to Series A with the identical funding obtainable. We ought to see extra areas like fintech rising with robust worth proposition for overseas corporations in addition to initiatives for native ones to remain. Talent might be costly, however this is the way it ought to be. Second- and third-time founders might be creating an increasing number of startups that can entice plenty of overseas funds too.

Lukas Kaminskis, CEO, Turing College

What trade sectors is your tech ecosystem robust in? What are you most excited by? What is it weak in?
Vilnius is well-known for its fintech and blockchain ecosystems — corporations resembling Revolut have banking licenses registered right here in Vilnius. We have a number of robust gamers in medtech and cybersecurity — Kilo Health and Nord Security — that are rising tremendous quick. Nevertheless, we’re missing behind with training. Explicitly talking, most IT packages in Lithuanian universities aren’t centered on getting ready college students for international competitors. This is why loads of corporations are establishing their inner academies to upskill college students from universities.

Which are probably the most attention-grabbing startups in your metropolis?
Omnisend, Nord Security, Attention Insight, Turing College.

What are the tech buyers like? What is the funding scene like in your metropolis? What’s their focus?

Lithuania has fairly pre-seed/seed funding scene with buyers like Iron Wolf Capital, Startup Wise Guys, Practica Capital, and so forth. Moreover, there is a VC fund — Co-invest Fund, which invests the sum equal to the multiplier of any accredited angel investor’s funding sum by 3x-5x. Investors in Lithuania are largely trade agnostic.

With the shift to distant working in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, will folks keep in your metropolis, transfer out, or will others transfer in?
Tendencies in Lithuania are fairly much like those we see within the world scene. Companies plan to adapt hybrid kind of labor post-COVID, whereas sustaining distant kind of labor as major whereas the pandemic is occurring.

Who are the important thing startup folks in your metropolis (e.g., buyers, founders, legal professionals, designers, and so forth.)?
Giedrius Kolesnikovas is the man to know from the authorized trade — he is the associate of Motieka & Audzevicius authorized agency. From the investor’s perspective, there are a number of of them — Jone Vaituleviciute, Rytis Vitkauskas, Kasparas Jurgelionis and Arvydas Bložė. These guys can open doorways to most of European/U.S. capitals.

Where do you see your metropolis’s tech scene in 5 years?
I see that Vilnius will turn into a tech expertise middle of Northern Europe. Edtech startups and personal coaching initiatives are rising in our market to resolve academic issues that we face due to the poor efficiency of public training insurance policies within the final 20 years. As effectively, I see that the present authorities is making an enormous effort to draw international tech corporations to determine their branches right here in Lithuania. Great examples are Wargaming, Moody’s, which established large facilities right here in Lithuania.

Source Link – techcrunch.com

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