KSUM-led team of startups visit Austria to explore investment potential


Thiruvananthapuram, Mar. 17: A team of firms led by the Kerala Startup Mission visited Vienna this week to study about investments and business opportunities besides the ecosystem for nascent companies in the Central European country.

The March 13-18 trip, which connected Indian investors as well as startups with corporates and emerging firms in Vienna, was organized in association with the host nation’s official trade promotion organization Advantage Austria and Bangalore-based Carve Startup Labs which is a global platform predominantly built to help fledgling firms.

Besides in the capital, the ten-member team visited Salzburg, known as a leading hub of innovation. The delegation concluded its itinerary at the country’s fifth-largest city of Innsbruck, which also hosted a roadshow aimed to strengthen ties between the ecosystems of Austria and India.

The team comprised senior officials of six companies besides one from KSUM and three from Carve Startups. The firms were Nexbillion Labs Private Limited, ellow Talent Marketplaces, AAKRI, Wizycom Nurture, Lithos Technosoft and International Virtual Assistance Pvt Ltd.

The team, on Monday, began its itinerary with an afternoon meeting with AustrianStartups, which is a neutral, independent and non-profit platform for innovative entrepreneurship in that country. The hour-long session, which featured presentations by AustrianStartups, was followed by a roundtable with the Indian delegation. This was led by Austria’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Program Project Coordinator Ipek Hizar, who heads the country’s startup ecosystem.

The delegation was subsequently accorded a reception at the Embassy of India in Vienna, which facilitated a networking interaction with the stakeholders in Austria.

On Tuesday, the team held a meeting with Austrian Business Agency, which made presentations and held a roundtable led by Matthias Adelwoehrer, Director (Asia) of Invest In Austria, the national investment promotion company.

The following day at Salzburg, 300 km west of Vienna, the delegation took part in a two-day Salz21 program aimed at connecting Austrian and international startups as well as investors with other innovation stakeholders. The Indian team held a 45-minute panel discussion with Renate Schnutt, Head (Scale-ups) of Wirtschaftskammer Österreich, which functions as the federal parent organization for the nine state chambers and 110 trade associations for different industries within Austria.

At Innsbruck, 200 km northeast of Salzburg, the delegation on Friday took part in Skinnovation, which focused on startups and other sports companies. It featured workshops, networking with startups, investors and corporates from the same industry and product testing.

KSUM is the Kerala government’s nodal agency for entrepreneurship development and incubation activities in the state.


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