Blog & News

Here's what we've been up to. Look around - and if you have a project of your own, there's a button for that. Right over there, the green one.

Chapter 1

January - February 2018

#Idea #Motivation #Hot markets
#Business plan

Chapter 2

March - April 2018

#Presentation Skills #Elevator Pitch
#Silicon Valley Pitch #First Investment

Chapter 3

May - June 2018

#First Steps #Strategy
#Marketing Tips #Development

Chapter 4

May - June 2018

#People in Startup #Team #Recruitment
#Company Culture

Chapter 5

September - October 2018

#Acceleration #Next rounds of investments
#Continuous contact and negotiation with investors

Chapter 6

November - December 2018

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Blog Articles

Jan Ulč: Think twice about expanding abroad

Jan Ulč spent most of his life abroad and he came to the Czech Republic only because GE Energy appointed him as a Business Development Director for Eastern Europe in 2008. Since then, he’s been getting accustomed to the Czech environment and trying to incorporate the knowledge of international business he has gained around the world. As the CEO of CROSS Network Intelligence, he wants to conquer foreign markets from Prague. In the interview he explains why this is just a short-term strategy and why every globally-minded company ultimately has to move abroad.

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What's Next, Europe?

In the startup world, Europe lags behind the US and Asia. Only 16 percent of unicorns come from Europe and the valuation of the European market is six times smaller than of the US market. One reason is its fragmentation. That is why we are organizing the SWCS event: to connect the business environment. The European Startup Initiative pursues the same goal, and its research points out that our old continent should promote mutual cooperation and foreign partnerships.

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Petr Šídlo: On Ethics in Business

Originally, we planned to ask Petr Šídlo, the founder of the Direct People innovation agency, about product development. However, the conversation gradually began to roll from the concept of MVP (Minimum Viable Product) to business ethics. We wondered if it was right to change human habits through products and instill the need in people to always be buying new things. Petr's answers were so interesting that we felt it would be a pity to leave them out, and that’s why we followed up on the first interview with this shorter interview.

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Petr Šídlo: Interview about Product Development, Getting Customer Feedback and Baking Apple Pies

Minimum viable product, or MVP, is the first functional version of a product that the company offers to its customers. You can imagine, for example, the first version of a new computer game or a sample model from a young designer's workshop. Thanks to MVP, companies can verify if people want their product and are willing to pay for it, in addition to finding out what they can do to improve it. Since the release of the book The Lean Startup, the term MVP has suddenly appeared everywhere. We asked Petr Šídlo, the founder of the innovation agency Direct People, what is so miraculous about this concept and how to work with it.

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Václav Pavlečka: What the CEO of an Investment Fund Thinks about the Startup Bubble

There have been fewer unicorns (startups with a valuation of 1 billion USD) in the American market since 2015. And even the ones that exist are not very strong. Nearly half do not even have the value of 1 billion USD, states the National Bureau of Economic Research. Still, many startups would die to become the next Facebook and many investors cannot resist a magic business opportunity. But isn’t the unicorn story just a fairy-tale? We asked Václav Pavlečka, managing partner of venture capital fund Air Ventures, what he thinks about the current state of affairs.

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Lukáš Balík: We knock on the door of the biggest players

From the financial point of view, the startup world is black and white. Either you get an investment and stay in the game, or you don’t get it and you are out. The global real estate market, which has more money than ever, is dog eat dog. Venture capital funds are starting to invest massively in real estate technology and compete for those they will give a chance to succeed. The Czech startup Spaceflow, which digitizes life in buildings, is now looking for a new investment. Spaceflow CEO Lukáš Balík told us how getting an investment in so-called proptech (property technology) works.

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Margareta Křížová: How to find an investor, prepare for a meeting, pitch and negotiate

The relationship between investor and entrepreneur is like any other: Trust, but verify. Speak and listen attentively. Look for chemistry and follow the intuition that tells you either to go for it or leave. Communicate your needs openly, but be willing to find a compromise. "An entrepreneur and an investor are equals. You bring the idea and work and the investor brings money. No one should feel tricked, "says Margareta Křížová, an experienced businesswoman, mentor and investor of time.

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Lukáš Foral: Analyze any feedback from the investor and, if it makes sense, use it

The Czech-British fund Opifer sees hundreds of projects every year. However, they have only four startups in their portfolio. Among seed funds this is quite common. In the US, it is expected that a startup will pitch to dozens of funds before it gets an investment. Why are some entrepreneurs successful while most fail? “Good preparation leads to success,” says Opifer co-founder Lukáš Foral.

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Přemysl Koudela: How to Find Your Next Seed Investment

From the creation of a pitch deck, presentation to investors and negotiations to signature of a seed investment contract, it usually takes a few months. It is said that getting an investment may take up to ten months. This sends a clear message: startups should start looking early. Vistag, a startup incubated in UP21, is currently contacting Czech and foreign investors and asking for a second round of investment. We were curious and asked the CEO, Přemysl Koudela, how it is going.

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Our Facebook News

Dneska jsme se v UP21 změnili na super-balící tým🎁Stay tuned! 👀 Vánoce se blíží. A děkujeme Airventures, že i oni přidali ruku k dílu a 200 balíčků je hotovo.

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Máte zajímavý projekt, ale bojíte se nám ho poslat, protože ještě není tip ťop? Skočte do toho po hlavě! Stejně jako to udělalo 1018 projektů před vámi. 17 z nich jsme podpořili a stali jsme se jejich…

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Evropa je líhní talentovaných lidí a skvělých nápadů, ale startupová scéna je příliš roztříštěná. Abychom ji zase dali dohromady, rozhodli jsme pravidelně pořádat Startup World Cup & Summit a letos ho…

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Chcete s vaším startupem dobýt zahraničí? Skvělé, přesně vám fandíme! Ale předtím, než se tam vydáte, se ujistěte, že jste skutečně ready. Jan Ulč, CEO firmy CROSS Network Intelligence, vám poradí jak…

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Steve Jobs byl brilantní řečník, na tom se všichni shodneme. Většina z nás ale není jako Steve, takže asi každý známe ten tísnivý pocit, když zjistíme, že budeme muset mluvit na veřejnosti a strach z…

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O produktovém vývoji se napsalo už mnoho knih, ale základní myšlenka je vlastně docela jednoduchá – naslouchejte svým zákazníkům a řešte reálné problémy. A za nás ještě doplňujeme, přečtěte si dva…

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Vize, kterou máme, je prostá - udělat z Evropy centrum inovací. Proto společně s Air Ventures pořádáme Startup World Cup & Summit. Přijměte tedy oficiální pozvání od Vaška Pavlečky, CEO Air Ventures.

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Základem úspěšného startupu je skvělý nápad, produkt a tým. Časem ale každý founder musí získat další investice pro růst svého startupu. Čemu se při takovém setkání s investorem rozhodně vyhnout a…

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