Launch Summit 2016 brought together dozens of valuable speakers, hundreds of eager participants and 50 valuable ecosystem partners including Techstars, Torch, Bootcamp and Smart Esa in one unique location. The event, organised by AltCity in the outdoor gardens of ESA business school on September 22, 2016 included a diversity of workshops, seminars, talks and pitches providing guidance and inspiration for students, young entrepreneurs and startups.
Berytech, a partner in the event, made available its team of business developers, financial advisors, marketing and communication experts and seasoned entrepreneurs to visitors at its booth. Visitors were guided through every step of the entrepreneurial journey from ideation, to hosting and startup, to incubation, growth and funding and how they can benefit from Berytech’s services in each phase.
A key activity powered by Berytech during the event was a public game/panel discussion “Entrepreneurs Vs Investors” held central stage and presented by Andre Abi Awad of Entrepreneurgy. On the team of the entrepreneurs were: Abdallah Absi, CEO and Founder at Zoomal Inc – Wassim Kari, Senior Manager at Strategy & Co-founder of Ounousa.com – Reine Abbas, Co-founder and head of the art department at Wixel Studios – Karl Abou Zeid, Co-founder and CEO at Swirl – Samer El GHarib, Founder and CEO at Slighter.
The investors team was made up of: Constantin Salameh, Managing Director at CSTouch – Souhail Khoury, VC at Berytech Fund II – Aurore Belfrage, Head of Together at EQT Ventures – Numan Numan, Managing Director at 212 – Sami Abou Saab, CEO of Speed@BDD.
The two teams had to answer flash question on entrepreneurship while also sharing their valuable experience on startups, growth and funding and innovation. Key take-aways from the panel include:
- ‘Sending entrepreneurs to Silicon Valley gives them exposure to other startups, a different business culture and broadens their horizons.’ – Sami Abi Saab
- ‘Slighter Lighter received 900K in seed funding for R&D from Berytech Fund II based on the team knowledge and the product’s potential.’ – Samer el Gharib
- ‘Invest your own money, your friends’ and family’s money and any fool who’s willing to invest in your venture before seeking funding.’ – Souhail Khoury
- ‘First elements to consider in company valuation: 1. the team, 2. the idea, 3. how you address the pain point.’ – Constantin Salemeh
- ‘Have a really emotional video to market your crowd-funded campaign, have valuable rewards and a realistic funding goal.’ – Abdallah Absi
- ‘You will never accomplish anything if you are always afraid that your idea will be stolen. You have to take the risk of publishing it.’ – Reine Abbas
Berytech also held an interactive workshop entitled “Draw Your Startup Journey-Get Inspired from a Lebanese Success Story in HealthTech”. Ramy Bou Jawdeh, Managing Director of Berytech, took the participants through the journey of a startup tackling all entrepreneurship growth stages from business idea to startup, to funding, growth and scaling while covering the main support players of the entrepreneurial ecosystem at each stage. Guest speaker, Tarek Sadi shared Endeavor’s experience in startups, key mistakes that are made and how to prepare for growth. Ziad Sankari, founder of CardioDiagnostics shared his story in creating a startup in the health-tech sector in Lebanon, the challenges he was faced with and the ultimate rewards, one of which is being mentioned by President Obama as a rising innovator.
The workshop was an occasion to officially launch the series of “Berytech Meetups Powered by GIST” in Beirut which will host monthly technology and science talks gathering a community of entrepreneurs, innovators and enthusiasts. The Berytech Meetups are open for the public. Find registration link here.
Techstars, a partner in the Launch Summit, held a Techstars Community Leaders Summit at Berytech on September 20 preceding the Launch Summit. Techstars is a global ecosystem that empowers entrepreneurs to bring new technologies to market wherever they choose to build their business. With 13 programs worldwide, their mentorship-driven accelerators fund the best companies in the most entrepreneurial communities. The Summit brought together community leaders from across the MENA region to exchange best practices and make a change through innovation, collaboration and entrepreneurship.