Events

Building Bridges Between Polish and Israeli Startup Ecosystems

When I asked Jeremi about his definition of a startup he said he didn’t know but he did choose a word which is crucial indication for that: dynamics.

‘Dynamics is a trait that can be attributed to many elements of our modern world. We expect quick, bold decisions and an open mind not only from startups. Investors, accelerators and government are presented the same challenge. It seems like dynamics is the decisive issue when it comes to being successful. Ability to adjust to the environment. But it’s important to remember that open mind and bold decisions are just the first part of good dynamics. The second part, which is just as important, is high quality execution.’

Jeremi Jak, CEO & co-founder of Polish-Israeli Startups Foundation

It seems that dynamics and high quality execution are not only traits of a good startup but also of the whole ecosystem. And in order for great innovation to happen, ecosystems should exchange knowledge and bring expertise but also questions to the table. Such an exchange will happen on July 27th July, when Google Campus in Warsaw and Tel Aviv will be hosts for PI talks, a one-day conference focused on bringing together great representatives of both startup ecosystems. It is a project of the Polish-Israeli Startups Foundation: a non-profit foundation that aims to build lasting bridges between Polish and Israeli startup ecosystems. Through sharing experiences and expanding networks they want to draw connections for mutual growth.

Israel is a true startup nation with over $5.4B in exits in 2015 alone and more NASDAQ listings than the whole Europe. Poland, a 38 million market in the heart of the EU, which has only had 10 years of startup experience, has a strong potential but is still a very young innovation hub. However, both ecosystems have their own challenges. Even though Israel is world’s leading startup ecosystem, second only to Silicon Valley, it is facing human resources limitations, missing experience in large-scale systematic innovation due to its size and is facing constrains in entering the EU market. Whereas Poland still lacks expertise and experience. There are not many entrepreneurs who have launched several successful startups nor there are investors who have made several astonishing exits. It is not only because of lack of experience but also because the country’s laws and administration are not ready for innovation and investment.

That is why there is a great opportunity for Poland and Israel to work together to support each other to tackle their ecosystems’ challenges. Israel could get great Polish talents both through outsourcing of software development and design as well as through recruiting fantastic Polish minds. Poland can also serve as a door to the EU market. First, it can be a testing ground, a sandbox for innovation and further an entry point to the EU market. Whereas the Polish ecosystem can definitely learn the basics as Israel has a great experience in building a thriving ecosystem. Poland can learn how to foster the ecosystem to spark more innovation and more success stories.

And for those reasons for this one evening, policy makers, executives and specialists from both ecosystem will consider challenges and discuss how to solve them together. The agenda involves a discussion on how the ecosystem can help startups grow (and whether it should do it), what traits every young (and old) entrepreneur should have and how to accelerate wisely. It seems like an interesting opportunity to learn from each other in such an open and vivid environment. Even if you are not in Warsaw nor Tel Aviv on 27th, you can still use the opportunity and join an online streaming (and you can register for both here).

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Change-maker passionate about entrepreneurship and innovation, creative soul focusing on PR and marketing.