By @SimonCocking we spoke with Alona Belinska Project Manager at Latvian Startup Association  StartinLV. StartinLV unites Latvian startup ecosystem around common values, promotes Latvian startup scene, and represents its interests. StartinLV is the main organizer of Riga Venture Summit, which we will be covering for Irish Tech News next week.

What is RVS?

Riga Venture Summit (RVS) is an international startup ecosystem policy roundtable with a focus on the Baltic startup ecosystem development. RVS brings face-to-face key policy makers, business leaders, startup founders and investors from all Baltic countries with prominent international experts.

When is it on?

Riga Venture Summit will be on February 9 at the House of the Blackheads, Riga, Latvia. The event is invitation only, but is going to be live streamed. The live stream link will be published on StartinLV facebook page.

How many years has it been going?

Riga Venture Summit is organized for the second year in a row. Yes, Riga Venture Summit is “young”, but it already has shown its power and positive influence for the startup ecosystem in Latvia.

What was the inspiration to start it?

The first Riga Venture Summit was in 2016. It was a turning point for the local ecosystem as Latvian Startup Association “StartinLV” was established. Also the startup manifesto was presented – it is document that identifies key objectives for successful startup ecosystem development. The main points that are included in  the manifesto are related to development of startups and startup entrepreneurs in Latvia, public policy, visibility issues, strong internal cooperation, education and ability to attract talents. The Association is actively working to reach these objectives and is doing quiet well.

What exciting things can people look forward to for the 2017 version?

Riga Venture Summit 2017 has announced two main topics of this year’s agenda: attracting smart capital and attracting talent. Latvian Startup Association strongly believes that these two points are the most important when talking about stable startup ecosystem and it’s positive development. Capital is vital for every economy, especially if it is young and unstable. On the other hand, it doesn’t make sense to attract capital if there are no startups to invest in. Latvia has a small population, and we have to be open for the foreign talent. Diversity of cultures and skills that talents might bring to Latvia will boost a vibrant ecosystem. This is also a good reason for our local talents to stay in Latvia, as well as chance to get back those who have moved away for chasing better opportunities and more money.

What opportunities are on offer for those attending?

If you attend Riga Venture Summit, you will have exclusive opportunity to meet outstanding people from Baltic startup ecosystem and representatives from such famous startup hubs as London, Dublin, Amsterdam, Stockholm, Moscow and other. RVS speakers are from different countries this year and with different expertise, but they all have something in common – they all want to boost startup ecosystem. We expect tense discussions.

If you would like to have your company featured in the Irish Tech News Business Showcase, get in contact with us at [email protected] or on Twitter: @SimonCocking

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