Where meet French sensors for drones Polish jewelry and Israeli high-tech needles? In Dresden, of course. On October 5/6, the HighTech Startbahn conducted its annual investor's congress for the third time. After 2013 and 2014, when we addressed companies from Central and Eastern Germany respectively, this year 109 applications literally from all over Europe (Ireland to Israel) were handed in. 64 ventures - growth companies and startups with key enabling technologies in the fields of Micro/Nano/ICT, Environmental/Energy Technology, Automotive, Life Sciences, Materials and Machinery/Plant Engineering were chosen to pitch: 40 in front of investors only and 24 more publicly in the INNOVATION VILLAGE at SEMICON Europa. Just as diversified as their regional provenance are their technologies: from intelligent needles for detecting tumor cells to jewelry with integrated SOS-features and sensors for robotics and drones - all of them looking for capital. In total, these 64 companies are seeking 378 million EURO in their current fundraising.
Over 80 venture capitalists, angel investors, family offices, corporate ventures and representatives .Investing Mittelstand. came again to Dresden to meet those companies. They were just as international, from all over Europe, China, Saudi-Arabia and the Silicon Valley.
Each company had exactly 10 minutes for its presentation and 5 minutes to answer the questions from the investors. Moderation experts led through the programs: Dr. Tim Friedrichson ( Max Planck Institute of Mollecular Cell Biology and Genetics ), Dr. Nicholas Ziegert ( M.M. WARBURG & CO ), Stefan Mayer-Ehrling ( Ernst & Young ), Friedrich Sulk ( German Accelerator ) and Wolfgang Seibold ( AGIC Group ).
At the evening event, the stage was set for a lively interview with Axel Schultze. Originating from Stuttgart and living in California nowadays, the famous serial entrepreneur supports companies with his platform Society3 One of the key messages he had ready for the founders was to "let your team take a share and thereby give them an incentive for building a successful company". This approach served as nice opener for the subsequent discussions at the dinner tables.
After a short night and the second pitching sessions on Tuesday morning it was time for the participants to move to the INNOVATION VILLAGE, where simless won the award for the best pitch at the HIGHTECH VENTURE DAYS 2015. Afterwards, the next 24 companies presented themselves to the audience at the fairgrounds with a short pitch and a booth. With his keynote Hartmut Kremling (Vodafone) gave a lively insight, how a Dresden-based startup with its technology helps creating solutions for upcoming challenges as the development of 5G standard. Hardy Isken ( Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control ) explained how Germany incentivizes investments in those companies with the INVEST grant program.
All presenting ventures heavily depend on those sought after investments to develop their companies further and therefore need platforms to meet active investors - a targeted format just as the HIGHTECH VENTURE DAYS.
Therefore we would like to thank all supporters who enabled us to deliver the HIGHTECH VENTURE DAYS 2015 - in particular the Saxon Ministry for Economic Affairs, the City of Dresden, Vodafone and the TechnologieZentrumDresden.
We wish all companies successful follow-ups with investors and plenty of term-sheets. And of course, we are looking forward to welcoming the investors in Dresden again for the HIGHTECH VENTURE DAYS 2016.
Please mark today in bright red in your calendar the 18th-19th October 2016 for this high level event in Dresden.