TechChill Pitch Battle has served as a platform for launching some of the biggest Baltic startups. Over the years as the battle gained its footing, attracting the attention of foreign investors and media – we redefined the whole concept to provide a more tailored audience to the competing startups, thus marking the beginning of Fifty Founders battle in 2018. The names and formats may have changed over the years, but one thing remains true – the battle itself is an undeniable catalyst for greatness.
Now as the application process for Fifty Founders battle 2019 is coming to a close (January 13), let’s look back at the successes of some of our past winners.
“After receiving seed investment, an early idea started turning into a tech company,” says Infogr.am co-founder Alise Dīrika
Infogr.am is a Latvian infographics and data visualization company. Since winning the TechChill pitch battle (then known as TechChrunch Baltics), Infogr.am has been acquired by Hungarian presentation software company Prezi.
|// Team: 2||//Team: 40|
|// Product: A frontpage, few charts, some traffic,
first clients with custom-made data visualizations
|// Product: A visual data storytelling tool supporting multiple data visualization formats: infographics, dashboards, reports|
|// Investors: first seed investment from HackFWD, announced at TechCrunch Baltics in 2012||// Investors: HackFWD, Point Nine Capital, Connect Ventures. Exit – Prezi|
|// Accelerator: HackFWD, few months after TechCrunch Baltics – Startup Sauna|
As Ernest Jenavs, Edurio CEO puts it, “it was an amazing experience for Edurio – the mentoring and feedback we got through the event helped us solidify our value proposition and test our business model with potential future investors. Although there was great publicity from winning the pitch battle, it was mainly the individual conversations in the conference that make this a must-apply competition. Perhaps it’s not much of a surprise that when we raised 230k EUR, one of our investors was also a judge at the TechChill pitch battle!”
“Straight after TechChill we raised a small round from Informator, which helped us get our first institutional investor. We also became better acquainted with Andris K. Bērziņš, who later helped us raise a round from his co-founded VC company Change Ventures,” recalls Rolands Mesters, Nordigen co-founder and CEO.
Nordigen is a global account data analytics provider. Since winning the 2016 Pitch Battle, Nordigen has gone onto raising additional capital and joining the investment portfolios of Seedcamp and Inventure (along with Change Ventures).
|// Team: 3||// Team: 26|
|// Product: A simple product that was made mostly for the Baltic market||// Product: Nordigen is a global account data analytics provider that helps banks and lenders improve the speed and accuracy of their credit decisions|
|// Investors: No institutional investors||// Investors: Seedcamp, Inventure and Change Ventures|
|// Accelerator: Nordea Accelerator|
SprayPrinter’s co-founder and CEO Sirla explains: “The prize for winning the pitch battle was a ticket to Silicon Valley. This was our first insight to this world and to be honest we never left back home after that – we moved our headquarters to San Francisco Bay Area half a year later and have been active there ever since.”
SprayPrinter channel art through technology by printing murals using spray paint and robots. Since winning the 2016 pitch battle, the Estonian startup has moved to the San Francisco Bay Area. Their most recent success story is a collaboration with Nissan USA to create a giant mural for Nissan’s 2019 Nissan Altima campaign using SprayPrinter technology.
|// Team: 10
// Product: Handheld smart printer
// Investors: Estonian investors
// Accelerator: Buildit
|// Team: 16
// Product: Handheld smart printer and mural robot
// Investors: Estonian investors and Silicon Valley investors
“From the application process to pitching on the stage, the Fifty Founders battle played a major role in making us clarify our value proposition during the fundraising process. Winning the battle not only added 10’000 EUR to our cash flow but also to the business development by offering great publicity in international media already from the announcement of the 50 selected founders,” recalls Anatomy Next CEO Sandis Kondrāts
Anatomy Next is a human body simulator for medical training in virtual reality. They’re on a mission to help students learn anatomy faster and more efficiently. Since winning TechChill’s 2018 pitch battle, the startup has expanded its operations across the United States, most recently starting a pilot VR anatomy course at UW School of Dentistry.
|// Team: 24||// Team: 24|
|// Product: Software for medical anatomy education
||// Product: Human body simulator for medical education and training in virtual reality|
|// Investors: Estonian investors||// Investors: Latvian, Estonian and American investors|
|// Accelerator: Startup Wise Guys|
At TechChill 2019, new teams will be competing for a chance to become the winner of the Fifty Founders battle (and the prizes that come with the title). We look forward to celebrating their victories in the years to come. You still have a chance to become one of the success stories. Apply to compete in the Fifty Founders battle 2019, applications close January 13.
Written by Maija Anna Ludbārža, Edited by Greta Babarskaite