Global Startup Battle is shaping up to be bigger than ever! Around the world over 275 cities are working hard to get their Startup Weekend community ready for annual fun of GSB! We’re excited to announce our awesome sponsors and all the ways to compete in GSB 2015. Be sure to check out all of this year’s prizes, resources, and judges on the website – more being added every day!
Join the legacy of global GSB champions as part of the Champions Track. This Track is for winners of local Startup Weekend events and will showcase the best of every city and region.
Great in the Making Track
Made great by Mr. Coffee
Making something truly great? This Track focuses on those who are making products and technologies that will improve people’s lives in areas such as convenience, organization, transportation, and productivity.
The Innovator’s Track
Powered by .CO
Calling all teams that are launching their brilliant ideas .CO! This Track is for teams building their business, company, or product on a .CO domain during Startup Weekend.
Disruptors and Big Ideas Track
Powered By Transpose
Transpose rallies behind game-changers and disruptors and wants to see what you can bring to the table. This Track is for the entrepreneurs setting out to change industries with visionary ideas and using the Transpose platform to do just that.
Startup Women Track
We’re honored to support building diversity with a Track focused on women entrepreneurs and highlighting their work and talents. More info coming soon!
Mobile Growth Track
Sponsored by Branch.io
Calling all app developers and enthusiasts! Let Branch Metrics help you launch your next big idea! Branch is looking to help all the Startup Weekend teams that are launching amazing mobile apps.
NEW! Open Track
Sponsored by The Company Corporation
What happens on Friday, Saturday and Sunday?
Friday: Participants arrive between 5-7 PM, begin networking, and eat dinner. After an ice-breaking game and a short introduction by the Facilitator, there will typically be 1 short speaker talk on practical topics ranging from Pitching Best Practices to Lean Startup Methodology and more. Then the “Pitchfire” will commence: anyone intending to pitch will have 60 seconds to give their best pitch. No presentations or props needed for Friday, it will just be you and a mic. After pitches are finished, all attendees will vote on their favorites, and using these votes the top ideas will be selected to be worked on over the weekend. Teams will form organically, consolidate, and begin working.
Saturday: Teams will work all day, with the occasional breaks to eat or listen to 1-2 short talks. Coaches will be circulating to provide advice in the field of their expertise for those teams that want it.
Sunday: Teams will work uninterrupted from morning until mid-afternoon. They’ll begin wrapping up their product/prototype and presentation around 3-4 PM to do tech-checks and practice their demonstration. After all Judges have arrived presentations will begin. Each team typically has 5 minutes plus 2-3 minutes Q&A from the judges (this varies occasionally.) The judges will select the top teams, give out prizes (if applicable), and the event ends (and celebration begins!)
What types of ideas can I pitch?
Any business ideas are eligible (whether for profit, ‘social’ businesses, nonprofit organizations, etc.), however the event is strongly tech-oriented. Approximately 95% of all ideas are mobile or web focused, and given the short time-frame, we strongly recommend that even non-tech ideas focus on a tech-related deliverable (i.e., website) by Sunday.
Can I pitch more than one idea?
Depending on the number of ideas pitched and the schedule, you may or may not be able to pitch multiple ideas. Prioritize your ideas: pitch your best idea (and the one you have most prepared for) first.
Can I pitch my existing business?
No. Startup Weekend is designed to be the most effective platform for growing new businesses from the ground up over the course of a weekend. A key facet of the weekend – and a central value for participants – is the spirit of complete collaboration, buy-in, and ownership. We’ve found that having existing businesses in the mix undermines this spirit, in addition to creating an imbalance between those ideas that are truly ground-level.
How do I protect against people stealing my idea?
The short answer is that you can’t. If you’re very concerned, you can limit your pitch to the rough outline of the idea without giving away key information.The longer answer is that this is not something worth worrying about. Unless you are confident your idea is a ‘key-in-hand’, easy-to-implement innovation that hasn’t been thought of yet, the advantages gained from getting broad-based feedback and a strong team motivated by collective ownership far outweigh the remote risks of someone stealing and executing on your idea. The truth is that over 90% of ideas pitched at any given Startup Weekend have already been pitched – probably many times – in the past. This doesn’t imply that the idea isn’t a good one, but rather that what truly matters is how well you and your team execute the idea. “One can steal ideas, but no one can steal execution or passion”
What if my idea doesn’t get selected?
The purpose of the Friday voting and crowdsourcing isn’t to exclude certain ideas, but simply to highlight the most popular and high-potential pitches and end up with a manageable number of teams – ensuring that each team has a variety of backgrounds and skills. If your idea isn’t selected but you’ve formed a team around the idea, you’re welcome to work on it over the weekend. If you decide to do so, however, please tell the event Organizer, as this may be an issue regarding your teams’ eligibility for prizes.
Am I expected to work for 54 hours?
No. At some events, certain teams will decide to work all through Friday and/or Saturday night, but this is by no means obligatory or expected. Whether or not you are allowed to work at the venue at night depends on the venue’s opening hours – please ask your local Organizer.
What resources/assistance is provided over the weekend?
A key part of every Startup Weekend is the valuable advice and assistance provided by the event’s Speakers and Coaches. In the spirit of “No Talk, All Action” we try to keep talks short and sweet, focusing on practical issues (i.e. “how to give a persuasive pitch”, “best approaches to customer validation”) that can actually help you and your team better achieve your weekend goals. Mentors – community experts in various fields ranging from entrepreneurship, software development, marketing, finance, law, and more – dedicate their time to providing advice and actually rolling up their sleeves and working with teams. In addition to the most valuable resources at the weekend (the people), we’ve also put together a list of some of the most useful resources in all startup-related fields, for both before, during, and after the weekend. Check out startupweekend.org/resources for more info.
How do teams address the issue of Intellectual Property/ownership?
As with any startup, the team decides. Startup Weekend doesn’t support or take part in the signing of any legal documents at the events themselves, and while Mentors with legal backgrounds are often present and able to give general advice, they are not permitted to give specific legal counsel. While it doesn’t hurt to be clear about your individual expectations from the start, we’ve found that teams who don’t spend time addressing this issue until it actually matters (i.e., there is a tangible product to have ownership of) are much more productive and successful than those who do.
What are we supposed to have accomplished by the end of the weekend?
While there are no specific requirements in terms of what teams should have accomplished by Sunday, it’s in your best interest to plan your execution around what you’ll be judged for on Sunday:
• Customer Validation (did you vet your business?)
• Execution and Design (what did you build?)
• Business Model (do you have a plan for the future?)
As far as presenting goes, some of the most common presentations include any combination of the following (in no particular order):
• Wireframes or fully developed website;
• Mobile Apps (from mock-ups to skeletons to fully functional)
• Slide decks (Powerpoint, Keynote, Prezi, etc.)
• Videos (i.e. product demonstrations, etc.)
• Live product demos
Why is it a competition?
Competition is not a central theme of Startup Weekend, and this is often reflected in the broad, horizontal allocation of prizes and general flexibility/leniency of the event ‘rules.’ If and when the competitive aspect comes into conflict with the positive atmosphere we try to cultivate, we consistently choose the latter. We do believe, however, that friendly competition is beneficial to all parties and, most importantly, more accurately reflects the realities of startup life. Just as it’s important to gather ‘real-world’ feedback over the weekend, it’s also important to have real-world pressures and obstacles.
Is this event for me?
If you are interested in entrepreneurship the answer is most likely yes. Startup Weekend attendee backgrounds are roughly 50% technical (developers, coders, designers) and 50% business (marketing, finance, law). Whether you are a serial entrepreneur or new to the startup scene, if you motivated to build a product or startup and open to new ideas you’ll fit right in.
Do I have to participate all three days?
Apart from Organizers, selected Coaches, Speakers, and press, everyone who attends the event is expected to participate all three days. This is important not only to preserve the ‘vibe’ of the weekend (“no talk, all action”) but also to minimize distractions/disruptions for working teams. However, at most Startup Weekends a “Sunday Presentations Only” registration option is available for those wishing to only view the teams’ final presentations. (Please check the registration page of your city’s website for availability.)
How do I register?
Every Startup Weekend event has a corresponding website riga.up.co with a registration page. Please see our events page at startupweekend.org/events for a complete list of upcoming events. If registration is not open, ticketing has either not yet opened or is already sold out.
Please note the different ticket types: if Business tickets are sold out and you fall into the Business category, you’ll have to wait for the next event (which won’t be far off!). This is an important part of our efforts to maintain a balance between attendees’ backgrounds and skill sets in order to maximize the event’s value for each participant.
Can I pay at the door?
In most cases you cannot pay at the door of the event. Organizers need to order the food and supplies in advance to meet the needs of the weekend. If you live in a city where online payment is extremely difficult, there may be an exception. If you are physically unable to pay online, reach out to the local organizers to arrange payment.
Do I need a team?
Everyone who attends the event as an attendee is expected to participate on a team. This is important not only to preserve the mission of Startup Weekend (teamwork!) but also to minimize distractions/disruptions for all working teams.
At most Startup Weekends, a “Sunday Presentations Only” registration option is available for those wishing to view only the teams’ final presentations. (Please check the registration page of your city’s website for availability.)
What ticket type should I purchase to pitch an idea?
Pitching is open to every attendee! We recommend you purchse the ticket that best represents your skill set.
What are the accommodations for the event?
Attendees are responsible for booking their own transportation and lodging (if needed). If you are traveling and unfamilar with the location, reach out to the local organizing team to ask for nearby recommendations. Some venues will allow attendees to stay over night, but please make sure to check with the organizers beforehand.
Do I have to pitch an idea to attend?
No, but we encourage you to! You can pitch an idea you’ve been thinking about for years, or something last minute you think of during the event. It’s a great experience and invaluable practice for public speaking.
Where can I find a schedule for the event?
Each event has their schedule posted on the local event site.
What should I bring?
– Power cord
– Business cards
– Camera – take pictures and video!
– Optional: A second monitor, keyboard, etc…. set yourself up to be productive!
– Lots of creative energy! 🙂
How do I prepare?
– Do some research. Market research and background information will give you a better understanding of the probelm your trying to solve.
– Practice your pitch. You’ll have 60 seconds to persuade other attendees to join your team. Make it clear, concise, and convincing!
– Get familar with our tools for the weekend, head over to startupweekend.org/resources
– Get some rest.
– Bring a friend! Events are better with good company.
What is the refund policy?
The short answer is we do not refund tickets the week before the event, so that organizers can order and plan for food and supplies. See our Refund Policy for full details.
What are the rules?
We have rules for the weekend that ensure everyone has a great experience. These are detailed in our Terms of Agreement.
INTERESTED in participating in the upcoming Startup Weekend Riga riga.up.co/events/7220 :
Global Startup Battle at RISEBA H2O 6, November 20 – 22
but not sure what to expect?
Here’s a simple diagram to show the five basic phases of a Startup Weekend.
Whether you’ve got an idea to develop or just want to contribute your skills to the Latvia startup community,
Sign up to become part of this event.
Startup Weekend Riga
May 22nd, 2015
Startup Wekend Riga winners were announced on May 23. 1st place went to House Heroes – a service that lets parents gamify household chores they assign to hteir kids. 2nd place was taken by Bacpacapp, which crowdsources delivery of inexpensive goods. Third place was awarded to Traveller Helper – an app that helps tourists get around even if they lose access to internet.
Rietumu Bank and the Decta Processing Centre open a support programme for Baltic startups operating in the field of technology and finance – transaction services during the first year of operation are provided for free.
When launching a new business, young companies have to focus on testing the minimum viable product platform development, search for first clients, and bringing the company above the breakeven point.
We are ready to help by covering the expenses of accepting online payments and servicing the resulting transaction flow.
Rietumu Bank operates with more than 18 currencies, which allows more opportunities for checking a startup model on different markets from the very start. The Decta Processing Centre has numerous opportunities for accepting Visa and MasterCard payments, transfers from one card to another, and regular payments.
Rietumu Bank is the leading privately-owned bank in Latvia specializing in corporate bankingand affluent individuals, providing services to customers in the Baltics, Russia, CIS, Europe and Asia. The bank was the first in Latvia to start developing the card services and services of e- commerce and today Rietumu Bank is the leader in e-commerce servicing in the Baltic States.
Decta Processing Centre was established in 2014 on the basis of the Latvian leading private bank Rietumu. Decta is modern processing centre in the Baltic States, in the establishing of Decta the latest technological solutions developed by Tieto have been used. Decta offers services in the processing of online payments by using cards of the international payment systems Visa and MasterCard and solutions for issuing and servicing payment cards.
+371 67 00 55 00
The FinTech start-up support programme includes:
– Free Processing of Visa & MasterCard transactions at Decta Processing Centre
– Next business day credits of Visa and MasterCard processed funds
– Free online merchant account at Rietumu
– Free IBAN Current Account at Rietumu
– Free access to bank’s transaction APIs: enterprise link, broker link, card link
Terms and conditions for programme participation:
Fintech startup registered in a member-state of the European Union and engaged in legal activities.
Free servicing term (processing + bank) – one year from the first transaction for business turnover not exceeding EUR 1 000 000.
Mention of the processing centre name on the startup website, and in the
press releases and social media of the startup.
Payment processing is performed for real goods or services.
– ‘Age’ of the company: maximum two years from registration date
– Volume of chargebacks: not exceeding 1% of total amount of transactions
This offer is valid for one year from the date of the first transaction, and up to reaching business turnover of EUR 1 000 000 a year.
Subsidiary companies or companies established as an associated project of a big business cannot participate in the startup support programme.
The bank reserves the right to reconsider the servicing conditions, depending on the history of cooperation and the type of conducted transactions.
To apply please submit a short brief of your startup to email@example.com
+371 67 00 55 00
About Startup Weekend and Windows Partnership
As part of our Global Partnership with Microsoft, we will provide a direct benefit to local Startup Weekend events. Microsoft and Startup Weekend identified the Top 50 events to host pre-Startup Weekend Windows 10 Bootcamps. The Bootcamps are hosted at the Startup Weekend event locations and are delivered by local Microsoft staff that are proficient with Windows 10 technologies. These pre-Startup Weekend Bootcamps will help Startup Weekend attendees realize the Windows 10 opportunities and acquire skills to do a great job at the Startup Weekend event!
Why pre-Startup Weekend Bootcamps will improve Startup Weekend events
During Startup Weekend events there isn’t much time for attendees to learn and implement new technologies. By partnering with Microsoft, we can take advantage of expert engineers and evangelists all over the world to teach Startup Weekend attendees. The goal is to enable developers, designers and entrepreneurs to build high quality Windows Store apps by helping them understand and use the latest and greatest platform technologies and services that Windows 10 has to offer.
Who is the target audience for the event?
The primary audiences for these events are app and web developers, designers and entrepreneurs who are attending a Startup Weekend.
Here is a rough guideline of how to spend your precious 60 seconds.
- 5-10 seconds – Who are you (and what you bring to the idea)?
- 10-20 seconds – What is the problem? Who is suffering from this problem?
- 10-20 seconds – How do you intend to solve it? Why is it better than alternatives?
- 5-10 seconds – Who do you need?
Give your idea a name so people can remember you and your idea when it comes time to voting and team formation.
Some other observations from the info session last night and from our experience in the past:
- Be interesting and approachable. You want people to want to work with you all weekend long.
- Be relatable and understandable. People are much more inclined to work on problems that they can identify with and understand. Tell a story if you can rather than listing a series of bullet points.
- Propose a simple solution. You only have 54 hours after all. If it simple and understandable, it will be easier to execute over the weekend.
- Prepare! No one wants to see you run out of time, and 60 seconds will come fast. More prepared pitches will get better support.
Obviously this isn’t a set of rules written in stone, but it’s intended to give you some guidelines and an idea on how to prepare. Make it your own, have fun, and put yourself out there.
See you soon!