August 2 to 17, 4 Russian cities have become venues of the Web Ready accelerator program events – IT track of the federal startup competition GenerationS organized by RVC and Center for Innovative Development of Moscow with the support of the Government of Moscow.
The series of events, called Weekend Activities, lasted 10 days, included 26 various events, and covered Moscow, St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, and Novosibirsk. The 80 projects participating in the GenerationS acceleration program were joined by 150 IT startups as part of the open events Weekend Activities.
Each city hosted an open Mentor Session, where participants were able to get advice and feedback from entrepreneurs, investors, and experts in the field of marketing, sales, PR, business planning, validation of ideas, development and bringing products to foreign markets.
Weekend Activities were attended by 57 mentors, including the following: Aleksandr Borodich (VentureClub), Dmitry Kalaev (IIDF), Pavel Pravdin (Founder Institute), Aleksey Kostarev (Giftoman), Andrey Yarnykh (Kaspersky Lab), Vladimir Suvorov (ЕМС), Vadim Sukhomlinov (Intel), Marina Rossinskaya (Maxfield Capital), Evgeniy Barulin (ResumUP), Evgeniya Smorodnikova (Likehack), Dmitry Sysoev (2gis), Dmitry Pangaev (BUBUKA), Fedor Skvortsov (Aurigma), Gleb Tertychny (Telefacer), Grigory Dernov (e96), Mikhail Smolyanov (Megaplan), Askar Rakhimberdiev (Moy Sklad), Liliana Pertenava (Runa Capital), winner of GenerationS-2013 Denis Sharov (Appercode), and others. Mentors had over 300 individual meetings with entrepreneurs.
The Weekend Activities' program included 5 Traction Meetings sessions, where the projects were working together with trackers in small groups to get feedback, formulate hypotheses, and set targets for the next period of the acceleration program. In Novosibirsk, the Web Ready participants were given an additional opportunity to test their projects for the strength of their business models and submit them for the expert review during Startup Lynch.
Within the framework of the Moscow part of the Weekend Activities, there was held a Fundraising Day, a pitch session with representatives of foundations, strategic investors, development institutions, business angel communities, and crowdfunding platforms. Each of the speakers had 5 minutes to tell the participants about one of the means to attract investments in an IT project. The pitches were given by a total of 13 speakers, including Nikolay Dmitriev (Rostelecom), Dmitry Kalaev (IIDF), Aleksandr Borodich (VentureClub), Ruslan Tugushev (Boomstarter), Mikhail Kharuzin (RVC Seed Fund), Aleksey Kostrov (Moscow Seed Fund), Lubov Simonova (Almaz Capital Partners), Sergey Eremin (Microsoft Fund), and others.
The program of each Weekend Activity was supplemented by workshops and case studies by 15 successful IT entrepreneurs. The most impressing were the speeches by Natalya Kaspersky, Director General of InfoWatch, about who should and who should not be taken in the business, and by Anton Epifanov, General Director of Leeuwenhoek, about idea-to-IPO company development. Aleksey Kostarev, Director of Giftoman, told 4 stories about the common mistakes made by stratup founders, their impact, and lessons learned. Georgy Mikaberidze, Co-Founder of Healbe and finalist of Web Ready 2012, shared the success story of his GoBe project that raised a million dollars in a month using the crowdfunding technology. Aleksandr Semenov, President of KORUS Consulting GC, shared his experience in building successful sales, and Maksim Chebotaev, Head of IIDF investor club, told where to find money for a startup, what investors may be, and what they expected from projects.
Presentations made by all the speakers are available in the Useful Materials section on the competition website.
According to Gulnara Bikkulova, Director of Innovation Market Department of RVC, "This year I have a feeling that GenerationS is participated by literally the whole country. Regional partners have helped sectoral track operators to collect applications for participation in the accelerator, and now they are supporting events for the accelerator participants, which are held in different cities of the country every week and unite the whole innovation community in the regions - entrepreneurs, mentors, experts, and investors. This level of cooperation is one of the main outcomes of GenerationS to the benefit of everyone for sure."
Photos from the past events are available in Facebook:
Following the acceleration program, the best projects will take part in the Web Ready Investment Forum, which will be held in Skolkovo Hypercube on October 8. The forum will provide a VC Corner platform open to help the projects meet the investors, Mentor session, exhibition, project pitches, Startup Lifehack roundtable with participation of the Growth category winners, and awards ceremony. 700 guests, including more than 100 investors and business angels, will take part in the investment forum.
On October 10-13, the winners will take part in a coaching session by serial entrepreneurs at Krasny Oktyabr API Moscow, and then enter the overall finals for all GenerationS tracks to present their projects on at the Open Innovations Forum on October 15. Web Ready prize pool is 1,5 million rubles. The GenerationS prize pool is 5 million rubles.
Organizers of GenerationS are RVC and the Center for Innovative Development of Moscow supported by the Moscow Government. The co-organizer of Web Ready is Skolkovo Fund. The acceleration program is held together with IIDF. Partners of the Web Ready GenerationS are: EMC, Kaspersky Lab, Moscow Stock Exchange, and Ingria Business Incubator. Organizational partners of the Weekend Activities are: API Moscow Krasny Oktyabr accelerator, Novosibirsk Academpark, and Sverdlovsk Film Studio.
Contact: Kseniya Golubeva
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