All speakers

Daniel Cronin /moderator day 2 Stefano Virgilli /Collaboration between startups and established companies Martin Železnik /Deloitte fast 50 CEE – Research and Findings Tomaž Stritar /Social entrepreneurship Luka Grah /Enterprise approach to operations and project management for startups Iztok Lesjak /Opening discussion with key stakeholders Dr. Miroslav Rebernik /Welcoming speeches Hermes Arriga Sierra /Social entrepreneurship Rok Uršič /Opening discussion with key stakeholders Peter Hopwood /Roundtable at PODIM Challenge Gaja Zornada /Product management Oksana Hoshva /Collaboration between startups and established companies Blaž Kos /Discussion Moderator Matej Golob /Achieving product/market fit and managing fast growth Peter Frankl /An honest discussion about what it really means to be an entrepreneur Yann Girard /Building a globally successful startup from scratch Sašo Papp /Day one moderator Jure Mikuž / Max Gurvits / Borut Pahor / Ash Maurya / Oliver Holle / Ciara Byrne / Matevž Medja / Shira Abel / Rob Fitzpatrick / Andrea Spiegel / Alastair Teare / Franco Scolari / Mark Johnson / Piotr Jeleński / Michal Wrodarczyk / Maja Jelisic Cooper / Robert Farazin / Kristjan Pečanac / Igor Košir / Herbert Paar / Cecile Baird / Jaka Lindič / Igor Panjan / Mark Pleško / Prof. dr. Miroslav Rebernik / Iztok Lesjak / Jose Antonio Morales / Reinhard Willfort / Davor Fabčič / Matija Žulj / Ivan Brezak Brkan / Daniel Ackermann / Adam Chroscielewski / Ivo Špigel / Matej Golob / Alessandro Ligabo / Peter Frankl / Rumen Iliev / Jan Habermann / mag. Alenka Bratušek / Metod Dragonja / mag. Maja Tomanič Vidovič / Andreja Kert / Dilyan Dimitrov / Tilen Travnik / Aleš Hauc / Máté Wohlmuth / Tudor Birlea /Collaboration between startups and established companies Ivan Brezak Brkan  /Building a globally successful startup from scratch Dawid Łaziński  /Achieving product/market fit and managing fast growth Kuba Filipowski  /Achieving product/market fit and managing fast growth Thibaut Rouquette  /Collaboration between startups and established companies Marko Derča /An honest discussion about what it really means to be an entrepreneur Andraž Štalec /Inbound marketing Jon Bradford /PODIM Challenge Investor Jonathan Cooper /PODIM Challenge Investor Branko Drobnak /PODIM Challenge Investor Miha Kampuš /PODIM Challenge investor Ari Korhonen /PODIM Challenge Investor Matevž Medja /PODIM Challenge Investor Jure Mikuž /PODIM Challenge Investor Dejan Roljič /PODIM Challenge Investor Franco Scolari /PODIM Challenge Investor mag. Maja Tomanič Vidovič /Opening discussion with key stakeholders mag. Samo Hribar Milič /Opening discussion with key stakeholders Robert Senica /Welcoming speeches Tristan Pollock /How I did it and what I have learned along the way Mike Bott /Speed dating between startups and established companies Daniel de Gruijter /Social entrepreneurship Gina Waldhorn  /Building a Bridge Between Brands & Startups Mike Edelhard /Startup management for professionals Tristan Harris /Product design and design ethics Steve Keil /An honest discussion about what it really means to be an entrepreneur Boštjan Škufca Zaveršek /An honest discussion about what it really means to be an entrepreneur Stojan Petrič /An honest discussion about what it really means to be an entrepreneur Sartaj Anand /Technology Trends and Future Unicorns Zdravko Počivalšek /Welcome address Jouko Ahvenainen /Digital Finance Ecosystem Jan Kennedy /Corporate Entrepreneurship Today Dominic Coryell /How to build a framework for consistent growth Eric Brotto /Mentor - startup relationship, how to find a perfect mentor as a start Soso Sazesh /Growth hacking and paid marketing/acquisition Simon Cast /Product management in practice Moshe Sarfaty  /Krypton Venture Capital Investment Mechanism Boštjan Špetič /Product management Varga Tamás /Achieving product/market fit and managing fast growth Mohd Zikry Kholil /Social entrepreneurship Carlos Silva /Crowdfunding Bistra Kumbaroska /Social entrepreneurship Ulla Hudina /Guide on crowdfunding Igor Alfirević /How to organize ICT development and processes in the growth phase? Ivan Ivanković /Collaboration between startups and established companies in the Alpe-A Monika Byléhn /Opening discussion with key stakeholders Fabian Bohdziul /Achieving product/market fit and managing fast growth Niko Klanšek /Crowdfunding success story ​Chris Chabot /Living in a mobile future Tomasz Rudolf /Corporate-startup relationship Gabriel Dombri /How to prepare a presentation to pitch your startup to a brand Kate Leto /Product management

Honorable Guests

Zdravko Počivalšek
Minister of Economic Development and Tech.

About Zdravko

Zdravko Počivalšek has a degree in Agricultural Engineering. He headed Terme Olimia for the last 15 years. He won the Chamber of Commerce and Industry award in 2004 and was declared Manager of the Year 2010. Zdravko Počivalšek, gained his first managerial experience in 1985-1986 as a member of a business group that reformed the operation of the Šmarje pri Jelšah Agricultural Combine. He was the manager of Šmarje pri Jelšah Agricultural Cooperative until 1994 and then the manager of the Mlekarne Celeia dairy company.

In 1999, he took over the top managerial position at Atomske toplice spa resort, which was transformed into the Terme Olimia trademark under his leadership. He held that position until his appointment as minister. In 2005, he received an award from the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia for outstanding economic and entrepreneurial achievements in 2004, and in 2010 he was declared Manager of the Year 2010 for outstanding achievements of long-term significance in the economy. 



Jure Mikuž
RSG Capital

Ash Maurya
Running Lean

Oliver Holle

Ciara Byrne
Tech journalist

Matevž Medja
DsgnFwd™ Design Accelerator

Shira Abel
Hunter & Bard

Rob Fitzpatrick
Founder Centric

Andrea Spiegel

Alastair Teare
Deloitte Central Europe

Franco Scolari
Business Angel

Mark Johnson
Founder of ZITE

Piotr Jeleński
ASSECO South Eastern Europe

Michal Wrodarczyk

Maja Jelisic Cooper
Televizija Classicum

Robert Farazin

Tristan Pollock
Storefront Linkedin profile

About Tristan

Tristan Pollock, star of American social and internet entrepreneurship, is a 28-year-old who was placed on the Forbes Magazine’s 30 under 30 list. He is reinventing retail and e-commerce with ideas he implemented in the start-up company Storefront. Beforehand, he had successfully brought his previous start-up SocialEarth to a successful exit that got a lot of media attention.
As the founder of the company Storefront, which had grown in the renowned American accelerator AngelPad, he succeeded in raising 8.9 million dollars of venture capital. He is currently an Entrepreneur in Residence in one of the globally most active start-up accelerators 500 Startups. He is looking for a new entrepreneurial challenge, and working as a mentor and consultant to many start-up teams.
Storefront, which The New York Times had called “Airbnb for retail”, is a web platform that had so far enabled more than a thousand brands and makers to quickly and simply find suitable retail space for their stores, events or the increasingly popular “pop-up” stores and cafés, and helped the owners fill empty, lonely space. SocialEarth, the leading web media for social entrepreneurship and innovations, also has numerous users and supporters. More than 170 esteemed authors from 25 countries write its news, newest trends and detailed analyses concerning social and environmentally-conscious topics. In 2012, SocialEarth was acquired by the media corporation 3BL Media.
Tristan, who is originally from Minnesota, but works and lives in San Francisco, has also designed and led incredibly successful marketing campaigns for Ashoka, the biggest global organisation for social entrepreneurship, and BestBuy, one of the biggest American online retailers. For it, he even created one of the most open and clicked email campaigns that had reached 23 million buyers. 

Mike Bott
Blue Chip Venture Company Linkedin profile

About Mike

Mike Bott is the General Manager of the American start-up accelerator The Brandery from Cincinnati, Ohio, which was placed amongst the best 15 accelerators in the U.S. by the research of MIT professors. It specializes in the development of high-impact marketing strategies and building globally successful brands. So far, it invested into 43 companies through 66 investment rounds, and successfully exited 3 of them.
Mike is a huge expert on digital marketing, who combines corporate and start-up experiences in the field of development of high-tech products, brand management, product and project management, and social networks. He serves as an advisor to a number of startups, including serving on the Board of
He was a Brand Manager for multi-billion dollar cosmetic brand Olay of the multinational corporation Procter & Gamble, where he was responsible for Olay's digital marketing ecosystem and efforts. He is also the Winner of P&G's 2011 Brand Building Award - Best Digital, and his model for digital marketing has been replicated throughout P&G. Beforehand, he had successfully worked as the product manager for AOL Mail, which was the most profitable product in the America Online (AOL Inc.) portfolio, and, the world’s largest on-line dating platform.
The Brandery had recently hosted the event Brand Fusion, as part of which they organized 15-minute “speed dating” meetings for start-ups and corporations, and which was attended by representatives of multinational corporations, such as Krőger, General Mills, PepsiCo, Nike, P&G.   

Gina Waldhorn
Evol8tion Linkedin profile

About Gina

Gina Waldhorn co-founded Evol8tion in 2011 with the vision of solving business problems with technology solutions. Evol8tion builds a bridge between the worlds of Madison Avenue and Mountain View by connecting early stage startups with leading brands to create mutually beneficial partnerships via pilot and mentorship programs, acceleration, and investments or acquisitions.
Gina founded Evol8tion and became COO after having spent 7 years driving innovation in digital strategy and communications planning for global clients including Procter & Gamble, Unilever, and UPS at agencies Carat and GroupM.
An obsessive problem solver, Gina has stewarded industry-leading advancements in streaming video standardization, and taken home a Young Cannes Lion Award.
She achieved a Master of Arts in Global Marketing from Emerson College in Boston, and is an active member of the NYC tech scene, mentoring and speaking to startups on monetization strategies, and capturing the intersection of technology and brands on the blog

Gina lives in the East Village in NYC, and loves technology almost as much as she loves dogs.

Mike Edelhard
Social Starts Linkedin profile

About Mike

Mike Edelhart is the lead partner of the Social Starts investment fund and CEO of the Tomorrow Project, organisers of the Pivot Conference in NY. Social Starts’ investments target businesses that are building models beyond merely social media, social applications, social networking, or even social platforms. So far they invested in 2 Slovenian startups, Povio and Zemanta.  
Mike is an experienced media and Internet start-up executive. He was the Managing Director and founder of First30 Services, a launch accelerator for early stage companies. Mike has held CEO and executive positions at numerous start-ups including Inman News, Zinio, Third Age Media and Olive Software, and was a partner at Redleaf.
Earlier in his career he was employed at SoftBank, where he directed content for the Seybold, Interop and Comdex conferences, and launched new businesses. Mike spent thirteen years at Ziff Davis in a variety of executive and editorial positions, including Executive Editor of PC Magazine, Editor of PC Week and Editor/Publisher of PC/Computing. He has also worked as an Internet strategies consultant to Bloomberg, Reuters, AARP and other major media and Internet companies. 
Mike is an Advisor to Spredfast, Citia, and Porter&Sail. An author of 22 books, Mike earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Northern Colorado.

Tristan Harris
Google Linkedin profile

About Tristan

Tristan Harris is a design thinker, philosopher and entrepreneur. He is currently a product philosopher at Google studying Design Ethics: how the design of technology influences users’ behavior, attention and well-being.
He is working on an independent design movement for Time Well Spent, akin to the Organic movement for farming, to shift from an economy that’s a race to the bottom for seducing people’s attention, to an economy competing to create net positive contributions to people’s lives.
At Google, he’s developing a framework to guide product designers on how to align choices with the lives users’ want to live, while supporting their overall well-being and attention.  He has led design sprints with various product teams, including a meeting between Google’s lead product designers and Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh, international spokesperson for Mindfulness. Previously at Google, Tristan worked on advanced personal assistance and productivity applications.
Before Google, Tristan was CEO and Co-Founder of Apture, which enabled millions of users to get instant, on-the-fly explanations for any topic without leaving their place, across a vast network of online publishers. Google acquired Apture in November 2011.
Tristan graduated from Stanford University with a degree in Computer Science, focusing on Human Computer Interaction, and studied behavior change and habit formation under Professor BJ Fogg in the Stanford Persuasive Technology lab.
Notable Awards & Mentions: Rated #16 in Inc Magazine’s Top 30 Entrepreneurs Under 30Stanford Mayfield Fellow in Entrepreneurship

Steve Keil
MammothDB Linkedin profile

About Steve

Steve Keil is a co-founder of MammothDB, leading the way in marketing and sales.
Prior to MammothDB, Steve was the CEO of Sciant – Bulgaria’s largest software application development company. Steve grew Sciant to over 300 people and opened offices in Vietnam before successfully leading the sale of Sciant to VMware (VMW) in late 2007.
Before Sciant, Steve worked in Australia as the general manager of consulting at BMCMedia, which was Asia Pacific’s largest online advertising agency.
He is a teacher at Sofia University and an active public speaker in the region, with one of his speeches featured on He is also a mentor at Eleven and Launchub Startup Accelerators.
Steve is passionate about elevating the importance of culture in the workplace, as well as questioning the values of established “best practices.”
Too often, he believes, we inherit and accept old belief systems, rather than evaluate and question these beliefs to determine their appropriateness and effectiveness in today’s environment. He often speaks in the region to promote challenging old ideas, and to stimulate fresh thinking.  For Steve, business is (and should be), very personal.
Steve did his bachelor’s in psychology at University of Arizona, and his MBA with distinction at Southern Cross University, Australia.

Sartaj Anand
Egomonk Linkedin profile

About Sartaj

Sartaj Anand is a Parallel Entrepreneur with an unreasonable dream to positively impact 1 Billion human lives within his lifetime. This is the core reason and motivation for all his actions and, as a result, he enables other individuals and organizations around him to create exponential social and economic impact globally. Some of the networks he belongs to include TED, Ashoka, Sandbox, Kairos Society, Pearson Foundation, SIETAR, etc.
He currently runs a boutique consulting firm - Egomonk, focused on Innovation and Strategy, and an exponential nonprofit - Billion Strong.  Sartaj has travelled and worked in more than 40 countries spread over 4 continents so far and now focuses on providing authentic thought leadership, driving empathic conversations and creating life-changing experiences.
His specialties are Design & Innovation Consulting, Business Strategy, Nonprofits, Growth Hacking, Partnership Development, Digital Media, Organizational Development, Branding & Communication, Training, Conflict Resolution, Intercultural Management, User Experience and eCommerce.

Jouko Ahvenainen
Grow VC Group Linkedin profile

About Jouko

Jouko Ahvenainen is a serial entrepreneur, co-founder of Grow VC Group, a pioneer in digital finance solutions, including crowd investing and p2p lending. He participated in changing US finance regulation, getting the Senate and President to allow crowdfunding, and has worked with EU and Asian finance regulation.

Jouko is a founder, partner and board member in several innovative digital finance companies. He is also an advisor for US, European and Asian investing and finance programs. He has especially worked to plan and implement models to get crowd investing and institutional investor models to work together.

Before having a career as a serial entrepreneur, Jouko co-founded data analytics businesses and held senior positions at technology firms including Cap Gemini, Ernst & Young, Powerwave Technologies Inc. and Nokia. He had also been a Certified Adviser for the NasdaqOMX First North lists stock exchanges.
Jouko is on the boards of various start-up companies, and is co-founder or seed investor in more than 15 companies. He has vast experience of international business in Asia, Europe and North America and regularly speaks about innovative finance models and digital business at conferences.

Jouko holds an MBA from Helsinki School of Economics / McCombs School of Business, at the University of Texas, Austin and a M.Sc. (Tech.) from Helsinki University of Technology.

Jan Kennedy
Academy for Corporate Entrepreneurship Linkedin profile

About Jan

Jan Kennedy is the Managing Partner at the Academy for Corporate Entrepreneurship (AfCE) which helps large organizations get, keep and grow their innovation mojo. They build and execute tailor-made Intrapreneurship programs that fuel innovation by transforming employees into Corporate Entrepreneurs and helps corporations generate, validate and launch disruptive ideas.
Jan is also a Director at the Founder Institute Munich. The Founder Institute is the world’s largest training and startup launch program, aiming to annually launch 1300 start-ups in over 100 cities worldwide. Promising entrepreneurs “learn by doing” and launch a company through structured training, practical assignments, and expert feedback from top mentors.
As Managing Director at Meltwater Group, he previously supported the company’s international growth to $140 million by building and running sales teams in Silicon Valley, Vienna, Munich, Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur. As part of the Asia Senior Management Team he helped oversee the operations of 10 offices. He started out his career as a Strategy Consultant and Market Analyst at Intel in Germany and in the UK. Jan also curates the weekly Munich StartupDigest from Startup Weekend.

Dominic Coryell
500Startups Linkedin profile

About Dominic

Dominic Coryell spends his days working with talented founders of 500Startups to help them expand their reach and impact more people globally. Most of his experience is with young companies and bigger e-commerce brands.
He is an enthusiastic and product-focused business builder, entrepreneurially-minded problem-solver, organization & execution freak, and loves making things grow while creating a system of checks and balances around them to ensure they’ll stay big once built.
He is inclined to always work on building stronger marketing frameworks because he really loves experimentation and learning, but is comfortable doing deep dives into product design/management, technical refactoring, or organizational structuring.
He is currently launching two new businesses, CodePath and Talkable.
He doesn’t want to “change the world,” he only wants to “change lives”.

Eric Brotto
Startupbootcamp Linkedin profile

About Eric

Eric is currently the Alumni & Partner Specialist for Startupbootcamp. He is also the Co-Founder and Principal of Creative Bytes, a monthly networking and panel discussion which revolves around creative technology and digital marketing.
In addition, Eric is a Global Facilitator for Startup Weekend and Decoded, where he has organised and facilitated events in London, France, Luxembourg, Ukraine, Norway and Malaysia. He has spoken at numerous events including Digital Shoreditch 2013, GSY Summit Malaysia and Signal Conference Northern Ireland. Startup Reykjavik contracted Eric as their Lean Startup Mentor in Residence during their summer 2014 programme. 
Eric Brotto cut his teeth in the tech world as an iPhone App Creative Developer at the digital production studio Smile Machine based in the Silicon Roundabout, London's answer to Silicon Valley. There, he built apps for brands such as Ford, Nike and Ubisoft amongst others. In the early days of his career, he explored experimenting with technology and building prototypes that mixed creativity and pop culture. Music Star was the first app he published to the App Store. The app asked people to speak into the phone. Whatever the person said then was turned into a rap song. The app hit the top 50 most downloaded Music apps in Latvia and the Bahamas.

Soso Sazesh
Growth Pilots Linkedin profile

About Soso

Soso Sazesh is an online marketer and founder of Growth Pilots. He helps companies scale their paid customer acquisition channels.

Growth Pilots is a unique SEM and paid acquisition agency helping leading startups and high-growth companies accelerate growth and achieve scale through paid acquisition. They show clients unprecedented transparency and have a relentless focus on maximizing results. They have spent millions of dollars in advertising spend, and they know what works and what does not. Their approach is deeply rooted in data-driven intelligence while keeping in mind that creativity is vital to any campaign's success.
They've helped over 50 companies with paid acquisition, ranging from early stage startups to Fortune 1000 enterprises.
Soso was also the co-founder of Circl, an intelligent promotions platform that helps retail businesses manage, distribute, and track offline promotions across any digital channel. They were part of the AngelPad accelerator in 2012.
He also advises and trains companies on paid acquisition strategy and implementation.

Simon Cast
ProdPad Linkedin profile

About Simon

Simon Cast  is a product manager with 12+ years of experience in both startup and corporate environments, looking for contracts that enable him to help companies produce better products. He organises ProductTank - a monthly networking event for product managers with 1500 members and 300 attendees at each event - and manages the local organisers for ProductTank in 7 other cities around the world.

He co-founded and organised the world-first product management conference MindTheProduct 2012 and blogs about product management on and ProdPad blog, both of which he also cofounded. He is also a product mentor at Seedcamp.

His specialties lie in product management process implementation, agile processes, data-driven management through analytics and experimentation, UX and user journeys, data products, roadmaps, building and managing teams, product design, and B2B and B2C product management. He also has extensive experience in operations, process and system design, and systems architecture.

Moshe Sarfaty
Krypton Venture Capital Linkedin profile

About Moshe

Moshe Sarfaty, Founder and co-owner of Krypton VC – with a Dual degree in Economics & International Studies from Yale University. Mr. Sarfaty has accumulated years of experience in investment banking, trading, business valuation & strategy and equity funds. He is the former Group President of a multinational financial group with more than 300 employees and 6 branches worldwide. Prior to that he co-founded and managed a company in Belize which recognized the promise of river logging in the country and its “Green” potential. He oversaw the project in its pilot stage while forming business relationships with the highest echelon of Belizean officials and its business community. He guided the project until it made an exit. Before that he was an Investment Banker in Bank of America Merrill Lynch in NYC a part of investment grade capital markets division. As part of his job there, he conducted financial and market analysis for corporate clients with investment grade ratings, focusing on their debt structure and overall market performance. In addition he developed ideas and solutions for clients, using a broad array of capital market products and used peer comparison analysis to help clients raise capital and choose their preferred financing alternatives. He was a part of various transactions teams, including TLGP secured offerings, strategic capital raisings, debt restructures and recapitalizations He now uses his large skill set, experience and qualities to invest, mentor and transform small promising businesses into independent profitable ones.

He also served as the first ever Israeli varsity captain at Yale University and earned 4 varsity letters as part of the Yale Squash Ivy League Champion (2006) team. Moshe is a former president at Shabtai Society (formerly the Eliezer / Chai Society) and active member since 2006.

Mohd Zikry Kholil
Incitement Linkedin profile

About Zikry

Mohd Zikry Kholil is the cofounder of Incitement – a global organizational movement present in 37 countries. It encourages individuals to incite positivity in the form of visions, goals, knowledge, stories and, in the long run, taking the idea into action. Incitement encourages people to speak up, step out, and take ownership of the world they live in and make a change for the better.
Zikry's globe-trotting journey since birth made him what he is today: an extroverted, outspoken third culture kid. Zikry is also an ex Radio DJ and a former National Ice Hockey Player.
Zikry has been involved with various Roadshows and events since 2003, has hosted hundreds of events himself, formal and informal as well. He was missioned as an executive Diplomat Officer with ASEAN in Jakarta, where he was responsible in pushing the democratisation plan for the Myanmar elections in 2010.
He is a pitching and motivational master who believes in exerting your belief, energy and tone of voice to your idea and that passion is the key in winning people’s hearts and minds. Zikry is a sought-after speaker, training and facilitating diplomats worldwide to adopt more innovative frameworks.

Zikry has spoken at multiple AIESEC Conferences, TedXImpact Hub events globally and many more, making him a sought-after speaker worldwide.

Carlos Silva
Seedrs Linkedin profile

About Carlos

Carlos Silva is first of all, an engineer. Whether it be in computer science, business strategy or starting up a new company, he can't avoid the problem-solving approach. He is pragmatic and very passionate about his work.
Carlos is an IT development and security expert with nearly ten years of industry experience, most of them in a leading role. Most recently he served as Head of New Product Development at Sysvalue, an innovative information systems security consulting firm based in Lisbon. He also worked as an information security consultant to a range of leading European financial institutions.
He is co-founder, President and COO of Seedrs – the world’s leading equity crowdfunding platform – and co-founder at Beta-i, a non-profit association that promotes innovation and entrepreneurship in the Portuguese society.
Carlos holds an MBA from the University of Oxford and a Masters in Computer Engineering from Instituto Superior Técnico, the leading Portuguese engineering university.

Ivan Ivanković
Squee, Croatian Telecom Linkedin profile

About Ivan

Ivan Ivanković is an expert for New Business Development at Croatian Telekom and co-founder of the start-up company Squee. He founded the latter in 2012 with two of his friends. Squee is an iOS and web application that allows users to discover, share and buy well-designed products made by brilliant and gifted designers. Squee team has successfully participated in several startup contests and conferences as well as received a seed investment from the fund Eleven.
He isn’t only a serial entrepreneur, but also works in Deutsche Telekom for their company Hrvatski Telekom, where he proposes and executes revenue generating initiatives as well as works in internal M&A. He had previously been Head of the Department of Political Analysis for Croatian presidential elections in 2011.
On his web page Ivan Ivanković writes about how startups and big corporations can work together for the benefit of both.
In his private life, Ivan is addicted to the cinema and practicing MMA is his “meditation.”

Monika Byléhn
Ericsson Linkedin profile

About Monika 

Monika Byléhn is a strategic marketer at Ericsson. After graduating in strategy and marketing from the Linköping University in 1995, she joined Ericsson, the telecommunications giant, and worked there as an analyst. She was also a manager and ran business scenarios until 2001.
Then she started working for Kaupthing bank as an investment manager, focusing on venture capital investment analysis and due diligence. She
continued her career path as a Secretary of the Commission of Business Confidence set up by the Swedish Prime Minister’s Office.

In 2005, she re-joined Ericsson as a senior market analyst. Since 2011, she has been working as a Strategic Marketing Manager. She is a Networked Society evangelist and writes articles for the Networked Society Blog. She is a driver of City life at Ericsson, establishing the City
Index measuring major cities information and commun ication technologies (ICT) maturity and their socioeconomic and environmental progress.

Niko Klanšek
FlyKly Linkedin profile

About Niko

Niko Klanšek, Founder at BizMe, FlyKly. Niko established FlyKly and introduced the first line of FlyKly electric bicycles to the US market in 2011. In 2013, FlyKly launched one of the most successful Kickstarter campaigns. Today, FlyKly Smart Wheel and Smart Light are riding the streets in more than 50 countries.Niko also established the BizMe company, focusing on advising and funding startups, helping them go from idea to market.

He developed his entrepreneurial talents at a young age. With the desire to imitate, and even surpass his mother’s business accomplishments, he was always in search of great ideas. At the age of 11, Niko discovered a technologically superior pouch in Italy and realized that the container would be ideal for packaging the beverages produced by Nektar, his mother’s company.
Niko graduated from Fordham University. Soon after, he became a member of board of directors at SLO 4 YOU Foundation, an organization that 
connects Slovenian people around the world.



Daniel Cronin
Austrian Startups Linkedin profile

About Daniel

Daniel Cronin is a marketing enthusiast, speaker and entrepreneur. Since 2013, he has been co-founder and board member of, a non-profit independent platform that connects and builds the startup community as well as helps startups become more visible and strengthen their brand. He co-founded the company aaa-allaboutapps gmbh, which developed and launched more than 100 apps with several million users over the past few years.

He is the representative of the 2Minuten, 2Millionen – die PULS4 Startup Show at the broadcasting house Prosiebensat.1 PLUS Gmbh.He has extensive knowledge in the field of entrepreneurship, mobile marketing, finances and risk capital, and has been lecturing at three Vienna uiversities for more than 3 years. He is also the mobile marketing manager in the company pMediaNetwork GmbH. He participated in various startup events as moderator and coach. He obtained his master’s degree at the Vienna University of Economics and Business.

Stefano Virgilli
Voxlab Linkedin profile

About Stefan

Stefano Virgilli is an Italian specialist in Business, Communication and Innovation. He studied in Italy and further expanded his knowledge by working with clients from 40 countries since 1998. Stefano is also the most certified Adobe trainer in the world, holding over 80 certifications and having trained 14 thousand participants in his career. In Singapore, he attained the WSQ Advanced Certificate in Training and Assessment (ACTA) Trainer®, Assessor® and Developer® Facilitated Learning by the Workforce Development Authority (WDA). 
In 2011, he wrote the book The promise of empty spaces and is currently working on his second book about the role of culture and perceptions in the area of business development. Mr. Virgilli is founder of VoxLab and General Manager of Al Majarah Business and Development in Oman. His expertise is highly sought-after by many top Government and corporate institutions in Southeast Asia, Middle East and beyond.

Martin Železnik
Deloitte Slovenija Linkedin profile

About Martin

Martin Železnik is a certified manager at Deloitte office in Ljubljana. He is responsible for audit and advisory services in the private and public sector.
Martin graduated from the Faculty of Economics and received the Trimo Research Award. He also completed additional training and gained the international ACCA license and Certified auditor license at the Slovenian Institute of Auditors.

Tomaž Stritar
Successful entrepreneur Institute Linkedin profile

About Tomaž

Tomaž Stritar is a social worker by education and an entrepreneur by heart. He is passionate about social entrepreneurship. Currently, he is 
working as CEO of Successful Entrepreneur Institute, which enables him to actively participate in the development of social entrepreneurship in Slovenia.

He was previously CEO of the Social Incubator Institute and project leader of the social entrepreneurship project Youth for the City. He is frequently giving lectures and workshops on entrepreneurship, and writes articles for daily newspapers and magazines. He firmly believes that the biggest changes are possible on the micro level and that every individual holds the power to change the world for the better.

Luka Grah
S&T Slovenia Linkedin profile

About Luka

Luka Grah is an IT infrastructure architect at S&T Slovenija. In his 14 years of experience, he worked on major IT infrastructure projects in Slovenia, Austria, France, Belarus and countries of former Yugoslavia. His field of expertise is managing large complex IT projects, designing and optimizing IT infrastructure with focus on databases and application servers.
For the last 3 years, he was involved in the design and implementation of IT infrastructure projects for e-tolling around Europe.
He is also the co-initiator of the startup initiative at S&T Slovenija, aiming to connect S&T with startups and help them with investments, international market penetration and IT services.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of Ljubljana and is a member of the Amcham, CEED and IEDC Alumni clubs.

Iztok Lesjak
Initiative Start:up Slovenia, Technology Park Ljubljana Linkedin profile

About Iztok

Iztok Lesjak commenced his research activity in 1980 as a researcher at the Jožef Stefan Institute and continued his career path as the leader of the Technology park project at the same institute.

He participated in the development strategy for technology parks in Slovenia and has, since 1995, been leading Technology Park Ljubljana Ltd., which became an independent company. Technology Park Ljubljana is the leading institution for supporting high-tech entrepreneurship in Slovenia as well as the co-creator of the Initiative Start:up Slovenia.

Dr. Miroslav Rebernik
Conference Chair, Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Mar Linkedin profile

About Miroslav

Miroslav Rebernik is Professor of Entrepreneurship and Business Economics, head of the Department for Entrepreneurship and Business Economics, and director of the Institute for Entrepreneurship and Small Business Management at the Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Maribor. He was a visiting professor at the Portland State University and Fulbright research scholar at Babson College. In 1993, he set up entrepreneurship education at the University of Maribor and established the research program on Slovenian entrepreneurship. He manages the team creating the Slovenian Entrepreneurship Observatory and leads the Slovenian team for the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor.
He has been leading the national research program Entrepreneurship for Innovative Society for the last 12 years and is permanently running and/or cooperating and consulting for different projects in the area of small business and entrepreneurship. He is head of the International Entrepreneurship Conference PODIM and member of the Working group on "Policy-relevant Research on Entrepreneurship and SMEs" organised by the European Commission. His research and consulting activities are in the area of entrepreneurship, entrepreneurship education and promotion, evidence-based policy making, innovation and entrepreneurship policy, and building start-up ecosystems. In 2014, he was nominated as a European ENSR fellow.

Hermes Arriga Sierra
Impact Hub Zagreb Linkedin profile

About Hermes

Hermes Arriga Sierra is an agricultural engineer with a master’s degree in environmental economics. He has experience in integrating technical and social knowledge. In the agro-chemical field, he is skilled in improving customer satisfaction and developing products for this purpose. CEO and co-founder of the accelerator network Impact Hub Zagreb, assuming the role of strategic manager. The organisation is building a community, 
connecting resources and creating networks of people and knowledge in 60 cities across the world. 
Hermes takes part in various projects and does multi-criteria and cost analyses. He is the project coordinator in HarvesThink, where he plans and guides activities. Co-founder of PhoenixArbor, wishing to connect companies and creative individuals in coastal areas of Croatia. He is also good in sales, where he implemented the yearly sales plan, successfully represented the company DowAgroSciences in front of main partners and helped in various fields in the organisation. Hermes is a trained and certified Lego Serious Play facilitator.

Rok Uršič
Instrumentation Technologies / RED PITAYA Linkedin profile

About Rok

Rok Uršič is an entrepreneur, investor and mentor. He is the founder and CEO of Instrumentation Technologies and chairman of the board at Red Pitaya. Before founding Instrumentation Technologies, he worked in different research and management positions at particle accelerator labs in Italy, United States and Switzerland. Uršič has a diploma in Electrical Engineering from the Faculty of Electrical Engineering of the University 
of Ljubljana. 

Instrumentation Technologies managed to capture the particle accelerator market and establish itself as a world leader in its particular niche. Its customers include some of the world’s leading national research laboratories in Asia, Australia, Europe and the Americas. Its products and 
services in the field of diagnostics and instrumentation are marketed under the Libera brand.

Peter Hopwood
Libris Communications Linkedin profile

About Peter

London born, Peter Hopwood is a communications trainer and founder of Libris Communications based in Eastern Europe, focusing on helping clients to improve their skill set with customer service training, public speaking and presentation and pitching skills. With a background career in the hospitality, travel, and training industries, living in 6 European countries, he now balances his work between Croatia and the UK. 
Holding a passionate flair and talent for public speaking and a life-long love of storytelling, Peter helps professionals to hit the spot in their presentation, copywriting and customer focus skills becoming all-round better communicators. Equally he lends his charming talents as a British 
English voiceover artist becoming the voice of brands, companies, startups and concepts. When he’s not writing, presenting or working in front of a screen, you’ll find Peter enjoying popcorn in front of the big screen or proudly following (the misfortunes of) Watford football Club. Admittedly, Peter was once stuck in a lift with JCVD.

Gaja Zornada Linkedin profile

About Gaja

Gaja Zornada a New York returnee. She co-founded the service for new-tech companies,, and the employment portal She started her career as a director of the most reputable Slovenian international agency for top artists, and continued it as a marketing manager for Kinodvor, the city cinema. She perfected her business knowledge at the NYU Leonard N. Stern Business School. 
Between the years of 2009 and 2014, she worked and lived in New York, where she led her own US marketing & prototype sales consulting practice for European export-oriented B2B SaaS tech companies. She also co-founded a startup company in the US, providing web services for European, Asian and South American government export credit agencies, private commercial organisations and university business centres. In her free time, she is learning about the fast-growing Brazilian economy.

Oksana Hoshva
HOSHVA PR, HOSHVA digital Linkedin profile

About Oksana

Oksana is a successful founder and CEO of several startups specialising in communications. Her agency “HOSHVA Digital”, launched in 2012, was recognized by a number of awards and top companies such as Microsoft, SONY, L’Oreal, Reckitt Benckiser and Watsons Ukraine are listed among its clients. 
Oksana started her own company “HOSHVA PR” at the age of 23 without investor or partner support. Today “HOSHVA PR” is consistently ranked as one of Top 10 PR agencies in Ukraine.
At the moment, Oksana is also working as an innovation consultant. She helps enterprises practice lean startup and design thinking approaches to solve business challenges and connect with startups to fuel innovation.

Blaž Kos
PODIM organization team Linkedin profile

About Blaz

Blaž Kos has spent the past ten years of his career developing the start-up, entrepreneurship and venture capital ecosystem in Slovenia and Eastern Europe. He helped to establish the university incubator at the biggest university in Slovenia, established the first and biggest angel network in Slovenia with 40+ investors, helped establish the first business angel network in Croatia, Serbia and Macedonia, was an investment manager at a 6,000,000 € seed VC fund, advised the Slovenian government on business and start-up environment development, was in the management board of the biggest technology park in Slovenia and established the first franchised co-working space at 7 locations in Slovenia. Blaž Kos has also established and is managing two start-up accelerators Start:up Geek House and Go:Global Slovenia. He is also author of the Agile and Lean Life Blog –

Matej Golob
30lean Linkedin profile

About Matej

Matej Golob, računalničar, ki ga je potegnilo v svet prodaje skozi dolgoletno mednarodno IBM kariero, iz katere je izstopil naravnost v startup svet. Organizator TEDx dogodkov, ki mreženje jemlje strastno resno. MBA perfekcionist, ki s svojim podjetjem 30Lean, zrelim organizacijam pomaga kreirati interne lean startup inkubatorje. Preko hipotez in napak, do končnih zmag, ki zatresejo trg.

Peter Frankl

About Peter

Peter Frankl, Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief of the Finance daily newspaper, studied journalism at Ljubljana University and also trained at Stanford University in the USA. He has worked at the Finance newspaper since its inception in 1992. He was Editor since 1994, becoming its Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief in 2006. The newspaper is owned by Swedish publishing multinational Bonnier Business Press, which issues business newspapers in ten countries. Before working for the Finance he worked for the Gospodarski vestnik magazine and the Delo newspaper. He has contributed columns to the Saturday issue of Delo, the Dnevnik newspaper and the Institutional Investor business monthly from the USA.

Yann Girard
Lifestyle Entrepreneur Linkedin profile

About Yann

Yann Girard is an entrepreneur that worked on both sides of the table. He started, advised and supported several startups throughout the world, and has lived and worked in China, New York and Germany. He worked with several accelerators and incubators, such as hub:raum (Berlin & Krakow), Wayra CEE (Prague, Munich), Traction Tribe (Silicon Valley & Budapest), Startlabs (Silicon Valley & Belgrade) and a few others. Yann supported them and their teams in sales, business development, growth or personal branding. He is also a frequent speaker at some of Germany's most renowned entrepreneurship institutions and universities.
His work was featured and supported by several entrepreneurship outlets throughout the world (e.g. Startup Digest, NextBigWhat India, Founder Institute, German Silicon Valley Accelerator, Lean Startup Circle San Francisco and many more). His first book The Perfectly Executed Startup is a guide that covers some of his advice on how to build a more meaningful and successful startup. It is based on his personal experiences as a founder of several ventures & projects, as an employee in corporate venture capital and as a consultant of numerous early-stage ventures.
Yann also currently advises a handful of tech and non-tech startups and has just finished writing his second book about entrepreneurship and startups called Confessions of an Entrepreneur.

Sašo Papp
Day one moderator Linkedin profile

About Sašo

Sašo Papp has dedicated his professional life to the mass media as a passionate communicator in love with the radio and great stories. In the 
last 20 years, he built his reputation as one of the most influential radio personalities in Slovenia, working with the most successful commercial radio stations in the country. In 2013, Sašo changed gears and is now working on many different projects. He is helping radio stations in the digital era of mobile apps with his own company ( – mobile apps for radio stations), he is also consulting (radio stations, startups and other companies) and building his own startups in different fields.
Sašo is a great and passionate listener and communicator, proven to be a good motivator and easy to work with, likes honesty and working in motivated teams. Multi-tasking is part of his DNA, he is a quick thinker with attention to detail and passion for organising teams.

Max Gurvits
Teres Capital

Borut Pahor
President of the Republic of Slovenia

Kristjan Pečanac

Igor Košir

Herbert Paar

Cecile Baird
Firestartr and Product Design Guild

Jaka Lindič
Xooltime and University of Ljubljan

Igor Panjan

Mark Pleško

Prof. dr. Miroslav Rebernik
Tovarna podjemov and EPF UM, Initiative Start:up Slovenia

Iztok Lesjak
Technology park Ljubljana and Initiative Start:up Slovenia

Jose Antonio Morales
The Lincoln Island Company

Reinhard Willfort

Davor Fabčič
Mercuri International

Matija Žulj

Ivan Brezak Brkan

Daniel Ackermann

Adam Chroscielewski
Deloitte Central Europe

Ivo Špigel
ZIP Zagreb business incubator

Matej Golob

Alessandro Ligabo

Peter Frankl

Rumen Iliev

Jan Habermann
Credo Ventures

mag. Alenka Bratušek
Prime Minister

Metod Dragonja
Ministry of Economic Development and Technology

mag. Maja Tomanič Vidovič
Slovene entreprise fund

Andreja Kert
Government Office for Development and European Cohesion Policy

Dilyan Dimitrov
Eleven Startup Accelerator

Tilen Travnik

Aleš Hauc
chairman of the board of Nova KBM

Máté Wohlmuth
SOPRESO (supported by EIT ICT Labs Budapest)

Tudor Birlea
Startcelerate Linkedin profile

About Tudor

Tudor Birlea, co-founder at Startcelerate, is a legal and management professional specialized in start-ups strategy development, investments, international transactions, business analysis, marketing and communication. 

He helps founders build product-focused businesses, starting from finding product/market fit through scaling up. Lately his focus is on customer discovery and development, sales strategy, process optimization and management. 

He has worn many hats in his career – software developer, manager, lawyer, marketer and strategist. As a result, he has a unique ability to manage multi-disciplinary projects and to navigate complex challenges.
He has Master of Laws (LL.M.) and has run his law office for four years.

Ivan Brezak Brkan
Netokracija Linkedin profile

About Ivan

Ivan Brezak Brkan is the founder and editor-in-chief of Netokracija - the leading digital business and startup magazine in Central and Eastern Europe, with special editions in Croatia, Slovenia and Serbia. The brand has been called "The Techcrunch of the Balkans" by Techcrunch itself. Ivan has been called the "Aristocrat of the Internet" by Forbes. Ivan is also the CEO of Meme Media, the leading Croatian content marketing agency that has done projects and trained brands like T-Mobile, Microsoft, HBO, Vichy, .Me and others in the "art" of communication with online customers. He has also speaking and moderating panels about social media and startups at some of the biggest European tech conferences such as How to Web, Pioneers, Blogomanija, WinDays and others.

Dawid Łaziński
ITMAGINATION Linkedin profile

About Dawid 

Dawid Łaziński is co-founder of ITMAGINATION – one of the biggest Polish software development and IT services providers. He is the Chief Architect, responsible for technology and operations. 

He has a lot of experience in building and inspiring result-oriented teams as well as implementing new technology standards and practices. He specializes in translating the latest technology into business advantages.
Graduated from the Polish-Japanese Institute of Information Technology.

Kuba Filipowski
Netguru Linkedin profile

About Kuba

Kuba Filipowski is co-founder of Netguru – a Ruby on Rails and mobile software development company. The company has made one of the highest ranked debuts in the 2014 Deloitte Technology Fast 50 CEE programme.

Kuba is a startup founder (Vivex Investment) and blogger responsible for setting up and maintaining one of the most popular Polish tech-blogs.
He spent previous years counselling and designing solutions for a large number of Polish websites and startups.

Thibaut Rouquette
Venturescout Linkedin profile

About Thibaut

Thibaut Rouquette is leading large innovation programs for VentureScout from London offices. Surrounded by hundreds of entrepreneurs and dozens of large organisations, Thibaut developed a real passion for innovation and has become an expert in building bridges between big corporations and startups.

Global Facilitator for Startup Weekend (part of UP Global), co-founder of the leading creative event for French graduate engineers (PolyNightWork), in charge of the global Research and Business Intelligence for Startupbootcamp FinTech, Thibaut also spent some time as a Software Engineer for the Australian Governement and in the Innovation Management team of Deutsche Bank. He loves Europe and he strongly believes in a tremendous potential to make innovation thrives on the diverse and culturally rich continent.  
Thibaut holds two MSc: one in Computer Science from Polytech Montpellier (French Grande Ecole) and another one in Business Management from Aix-Marseille Graduate School of Management.

Marko Derča
A.T. Kearney

About Marko

Marko Derča is an Associated Vice President at A.T.Kearney, and is currently leading the Energy & Telecommunications team in South-Eastern Europe. Furthermore, he took over the management of the digital and information technology in Eastern Europe. Marko has over 8 years of consulting and industry experience with A.T.Kearney in energy and process industries, telecommunication industry and financial institutions. His 
areas of expertise include restructuring and transformation, mergers and integrations, process and costs optimization. He has lead various strategic projects for large telecom operators, utility companies, banks, process industries and different energy companies in the SEE region. Marko is also an active member in IEDC Alumni club, Slovenian Managers Association and member of the Board at annual CIO conference. He regularly attends and participates on domestic and international conferences, lectures, round tables and other key business events.

Andraž Štalec
Red Orbit Linkedin profile

About Andraž

Andraž Štalec is CEO and co-founder of Red Orbit, one of the leading digital performance agencies in the Adriatic region. He is focused on optimizing digital performance with strong focus on business goals. Data, analytics and performance run through his veins. He is also a Google certified trainer and a regular speaker at various events in Slovenia and abroad.
At Red Orbit, he works with a team of highly specialized professionals to push the limits of digital marketing and challenge the status quo. They measure, analyse and optimize digital users’ behaviour. Andraž advises numerous renowned Slovenian and foreign companies, including Big Bang, Adriatic Slovenia, Adria Airways, Vzajemna, Valamar, Maistra, Abanka, Droga Kolinska, Gorenjska Banka and others. He received the 
Best business idea of 2009 award for his company Red Orbit, and the Start-up Slovenia 2010 recognition.

Jon Bradford
TechStars Linkedin profile

About Jon

Jon Bradford is the Managing Director of TechStars in London.
Previously Jon was the co-founder and CEO of Springboard. Jon loves to help start-ups and their founders achieve their true potential. Over the last 2 years, Jon acted as an advisor to many other multi-company accelerators, from Montreal to Moscow.
Since launching Europe’s first bootcamp accelerator in 2009 - The Difference Engine – he helped to launch Springboard now based in Cambridge and London, which subsequently merged with Techstars. In addition, he also founded ignite100, a re-invention of the Difference Engine that combines a 13-week accelerator with a follow-on funding of up to £100k per team, and Startup Wise Guys in Estonia, Eleven in Bulgaria and TexDrive in Moscow.
He is also the co-founder of Startup Wise GuysSpringboardEleven Accelerator Venture Fund, and f6s.
In a previous life, Jon trained as an accountant with Arthur Andersen, and subsequently worked in various start-ups and turnarounds. He worked in London, throughout Europe, Australia as well as the United States.

Jonathan Cooper
Vision Investment Services Linkedin profile

About Jonathan

Jonathan Cooper is an investment management and banking expert with over 15 years of experience in Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East, and the US as a private equity/venture capital fund manager, and M&A adviser. His industry expertise includes telecoms, internet, media, software development, IT services and others.
He is currently the Executive Vice President at Vision Investment Services, which is the leading independent investment bank in Oman, dealing with asset management, brokerage, financial advice and proprietary investment activities. The group is managing over $400 million of client assets and is supported by the group’s equity base of more than $30 million.

He is also investor and board member at Televizija Classicum Ltd. and course instructor at Euromoney Training

Branko Drobnak
Business Angels Club of Slovenia Linkedin profile

About Branko

Branko Drobnak is an active member of the Slovenian start-up community and an investor in more than 15 start-up companies. He is a serial entrepreneur with years of experience in setting up and managing companies, as well as the initiator, co-founder and president of the Business Angels Club of Slovenia, owner of Arima, management board member of Alta Group, and mentor in the CEED programme and accelerators Go:Global Slovenia and Start:up Geek House. He helps the companies he invests in or advises to achieve global growth by sharing his knowledge, experiences and a strongly branched social network.
In 1992, he became the CEO and majority shareholder of the company Poteza d.o.o. Soon afterwards, he served as a management board member at Skladi Triglav, taking care of marketing, then led Istrska hranilnica in posojilnica d.o.o. for two years, and was Chairman of the Board of the Poteza brokerage company for three years. He contributed to the establishment of Prva pokojninska družba d.d. as deputy director. As a member and then as the Chairman of the Supervisory Board, he spent 5 years taking care of the development of Abanka, the third largest Slovenian bank. Since 2000, he has been acting as Chairman of the Board of Poteza Skupine, where he continues to design, plan and manage the implementation of company’s development strategies, in line with expectations of all its stakeholders.  

Miha Kampuš
Gasser+Partner Management Linkedin profile

About Miha

Miha Kampuš has private equity, management know-how, a network and a promise and deliver attitude. He is founder and CEO of Saravini, company that has extensive experience in manufacturing refrigerated, heated and ambient counters for a variety of food retail environments: bakeries, pastry shops, butchers, high-end supermarkets, gourmet shops, coffee shops, gas stations, etc.
He has experience in top management positions as CEO at Gasser+Partner Management, Board Member at USP indicators, Board Member at Posojilnica-Bank, Director at USP Solutions ASIA Pte. Ltd., Chairman of the Board at best connect, and Board Member at On Point.
He holds a degree in Engineering and had studied at the HTL Elektronik Polytechnic in Klagenfurt, Austria. Mr. Kampuš also completed a management course at the Managerial Centre St. Gallen, Switzerland.
As a Carinthian Slovene, he started the initiative that would connect the Slovenian minority and the German-speaking majority in Carinthia. One of the goals of the initiative is to overcome the past that has been separating the two nations for decades.
Kampuš, an entrepreneur living in Klagenfurt, thus founded the platform Unser Land/Naša dežela (Our land) – Zusammenwachsen/Rastimo skupaj (Let’s grow together).
He has been singing in the Jakob Petelin Gallus choir from Klagenfurt for 25 years, and has been its president for 10 years. 

Ari Korhonen
Lagoon Capital Linkedin profile

About Ari

Ari Korhonen is one of the most active Finnish business angels and venture capitalists. He is the founder of the Lagoon Capital investment firm and an investor in Seedcamp500 Startups and Spintop Ventures.
Ari has been a successful technology entrepreneur for 20 years and a business angel for 10 years. He developed his company Komartek into an international success story, then sold it to WM-data (presently CGI) in 2004, keeping the position of Vice President.
Within the last 10 years, Ari has made angel investments in 23 companies, with the total of 78 investment rounds. These include MariaDBDealDashPaytrailMiradoreIn4mo360Cities and Citysocializer. From the above-mentioned investments, he has had two successful exits from Severa and The Switch.
He is a co-founder of Finnish Business Angels Network (FiBAN) and had been Vice Chairman of the Board during 2010-2012. Ari has been an European Business Angel Network (EBAN) board member and Vice-President since 2012. He is also a member of Estonian Business Angels Network (EstBAN). Ari was nominated by EBAN as European Business Angel of the Year in 2009 and elected by FiBAN as the Finnish Business Angel of the Year in 2014. 

Matevž Medja
DsgnFwd Design Accelerator Linkedin profile

About Matevž

Matevž Medja is the co-founder and CEO of the company Gigodesign, which became one of the leading Slovenian design companies. Gigodesign collaborates with the best companies in the region, such as Studio Moderna, Elan, Fructal …
Matevž is the recipient of several national and international awards from the field of advertising and design, namely Red Dot and Designpreis Deutschland. Company Gigodesign and its partners Robert Antunovič from Boulder in the USA and venture capital fund RSG Capital launched a DsgnFwd Design Accelerator that helps young companies develop a product and put it on the market in 100 days.

Jure Mikuž
RSG Capital Linkedin profile

About Jure

Jure Mikuž has established RSG Kapital, the first Slovenia-based VC Fund, raising private commitments mostly from domestic industrial investors such as Gorenje, Sava, Kolektor, FMR, Instrumentation Technologies and others. He serves on several boards of the investee companies, including CeltraTAB Systems and MountVacation.
Jure is actively promoting entrepreneurship and regularly holds lectures on finance and fundraising procedures for the start-up communities in Slovenia and across the Balkans. Prior to establishing RSG Capital he was a deputy head of asset management in KD Group and stock broker on the Ljubljana stock exchange.

Dejan Roljič
ABC Accelerator Linkedin profile

About Dejan

Dejan Roljić is cofounder and director of the new ABC accelerator that aims to connect innovative startups with bigger established companies in all of South-East Europe.
Roljić also has first-hand experience in the inner workings of acceleration programmes, as his company Formtaste innovations had been accepted into the Amsterdam-based Startbootcamp. Formtaste created Printie – a multifunctional vending kiosk where users can print, copy and scan. The integrated service brings personalised advertising with access to a broad range of consumers.
The young entrepreneur is founder of Shanghai Summer School, where ambitious students learn the Chinese language, get to know the culture and discover business opportunities of the huge market. He has been leading the summer school since 2011 and so far, 204 students have already taken part.
He studied at the University of Ljubljana at the Faculty of Engineering, but he also attended The Entrepreneurial University in Munich and the University of International Business and Economics in Shanghai.
He is also the initiator of the charity action Bread for a friend (“Kruh za pr’jatla”) which gives customers in bakeries the option of buying additional bread for those who can’t afford it.  

Franco Scolari
Business Angels of Italy Linkedin profile

About Franco

Franco Scolari is an active member of the largest Business Angel group in Italy. During his career he assumed many manager roles in different companies such as Pirelli, Electrolux Professional, Ideal Standard International ... He is currently the CEO of Technology park Polo in the city of Pordenone.

mag. Maja Tomanič Vidovič
Slovene entreprise fund

Maja Tomanič-Vidovič, BA in Economics and journalism, started her career as a journalist on RTV (Slovenian public broadcaster), where she covered the field of economics. In 1998 she took the post of a government advisor at the Ministry of Small Business and Tourism. In 2000, she was appointed as the state undersecretary for Small Business in the Ministry of Economics. During this time, she actively followed the economic developments in Podravska region, especially in the field of small business and entrepreneurship. Since 2000, she has been working with Gea College, a private faculty for entrepreneurship, and DOBA – Faculty of Applied Business and Social Studies Maribor. She is a professor of entrepreneurship and financial management of small businesses.

Since 2007 she has been the director of the Slovenian entrepreneurship Fund, a public institution established to better facilitate funds for small and medium sized businesses.

mag. Samo Hribar Milič
Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia

About Samo Hribar Milič

Samo Hribar Milič is currently the president and general manager of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia (CCIS). He was the general manager of CCIS from June 2007 to June 2011, and its temporary president from November 2006 to June 2007. In the period from 2004 to 2006, he was the secretary-general of the Association of Employers of Slovenia. In those years, he was actively involved in the social dialogue in Slovenia as the representative of employers. He was also a member of the Slovenian Economic and Social Council, and directly involved in collective bargaining.
Throughout his career, he was director of Pristop, the leading Slovenian PR and advertising agency from 2002 to 2003. Before that, he spent nine years with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia, where he was the vice-president of CCIS, project director, and secretary of the Small Industries Association of Slovenia.
He was head of the department for employment and career guidance in the Employment Service of Slovenia, followed by a job as an entrepreneurship consultant in the early 90s. During this time, he also advised many companies and was a lecturer of entrepreneurship at Gea College in Ljubljana. He started his career path in the 80s as the editor-in-chief of the Študent radio and continued on Radio Glas Ljubljana, where he was first a journalist and then an assistant manager.
He has a master’s degree in sociology. He speaks Italian and English. 

Robert Senica
President of the Nova KBM Management Board Linkedin profile

About Robert

The Nova KBM Supervisory Board appointed Robert Senica as a member of the Management Board on 4 April 2014. After being granted a licence by the Bank of Slovenia to hold a position as a member of the Nova KBM Management Board on 8 July 2014, Senica started his five-year term of office on 1 August 2014. As a member of the Nova KBM Management Board, he was responsible for the commercial activities of Nova KBM.
On 28 February 2015, Senica was appointed as the President of the Management Board, with his responsibilities encompassing the following areas: the Corporate Banking Division; the Retail Banking Division; the Corporate Governance Division; the Management Board Office; the Nova KBM Group Governance Centre; the Internal Audit Centre; and the Marketing and Corporate Communications Department.

Robert Senica has 15 years of work experience in banking, commercial activities, and finance. He started his career in 2000 at Banka Celje. Between 2007 and 2013, he held various management positions at Hypo Leasing: initially, he served as the Manager of the Celje business unit, and later, from 2011 onwards, as the Director of Sales and the authorised representative of the company, a position he was asked to take by the owner of Hypo Bank following the replacement of its management board. His main focus in the latter position was on crisis management.

From January 2013 to July 2014, a period in which the banking system was faced with numerous challenges, he acted as the President of the Management Board of Poštna banka Slovenije (PBS), a Nova KBM Group company, with his duties including crisis management, market repositioning of PBS, and the management of its 242 employees.

Daniel de Gruijter
Incitement Linkedin profile

About Daniel

Daniel de Gruijter is the cofounder of Incitement, a global movement built around creating a more equal, tolerant, and positive world. Incitement was founded late 2011, and today its events are being organized all around the world, and was nominated ‘Most Inspirational Movement 2012’ by FACES Magazine, and ‘Fastest Growing Movement’ by MasterPeace. His work at Incitement got him shortlisted for Richard Branson’s Talent Unleashed Awards 2014 for the category Community Impact.

Born and raised in The Netherlands, he graduated in both Tourism & Leisure Management, and Marketing & Economics. During his time as a university student he started his first business, developing and implementing online strategies for startup companies. Early 2011 he felt it was time for a bigger challenge; he decided to move to Malaysia. 

In Malaysia he worked for the world’s largest publishing company in the personal growth industry, Mindvalley. As head of the Conversions Team, existing of 4  marketing guilds, he was responsible for several multi-million dollar businesses. He also first launched what is currently the #1 US grossing iPad app in the Health & Fitness category, managed the company’s 1.5 million subscriber base, and was involved in several key tech projects, such as the development of the company’s business intelligence tools, and an enterprise database migration. 

Daniel specializes in sales funnel optimization and copywriting, and was personally mentored by some of the world’s finest online marketers, such as Andre Chaperon and ‘Big’ Jason Henderson. Daniel still coaches several companies around the world.

Boštjan Škufca Zaveršek
Si.mobil Linkedin profile

About Boštjan

Boštjan Škufca Zaveršek started his career at Si.mobil as a student. After graduating from the Ljubljana Faculty of Economics, he was employed by Si.mobil as a specialist for fixed assets in the accounting department. He continued his career in the controlling department, and after that he became an in-house auditor.In 2004, he was appointed head of Fraud and Collection. During this time, he acquired his Master's Degree in Business Finance and Banking at the Maribor Faculty of Economics and Business. He was the Finance Sector Director for 2 years, and in February 2010 he became the Sales Director. He was appointed the company's CFO on 15 October 2012, and was also Si.mobil's acting CEO from March 2014 to August 2014.

As a member of the management team, he has been involved in almost all of Si.mobil's major corporate and strategic projects. He designed the project supervision and in-house auditing office, he established the system of paperless operations, and successfully carried out cost optimization in the company. Under his helm, Si.mobil introduced the E-invoice and Si.asistent (Si.assistant) e-services. He prepared the design strategy for the Perfect Office Suite of business services and products, with which Si.mobil has expanded its operations beyond the field of mobile telecommunications and become a provider of comprehensive business communication services.

On his professional path, Boštjan Škufca Zaveršek has gained a comprehensive understanding of Si.mobil's operations and at the same time of very different business fields. His rich experience has significantly contributed to Si.mobil being the most successful Slovenian telecommunications operator today. Despite market saturation and a financial crisis, Si.mobil is generating outstanding business results and is one of the most active employers in Slovenia, and the number of its customers is constantly growing.

Stojan Petrič

About Stojan Petrič

Stojan Petrič is considered to be one of the most esteemed Slovenian managers. He has been leading the KOLEKTOR group for 20 years, achieving enviable results. In 1994, before he started leading the company that then had 950 employees, he strung up successes in different functions at various levels – as a commercial clerk, purchasing manager, external store manager, commercial manager … Since Petrič started leading the Kolektor group, the total turnover multiplied by fifteen, the number of employees increased to 3090 and the group became a highly internationalized, globalized and product-diversified company – a small multinational with more than 30 companies at home and abroad. Under his leadership, Kolektor became a 100 % Slovenian-owned company in 2002, after 34 years of foreign (co)ownership. 

Boštjan Špetič
ZEMANTA Linkedin profile

About Boštjan

Boštjan Špetič, Chief Product Officer and co-founder at Zemanta. He studied philosophy and sociology while working as a TV journalist and intermedia artist, with several international art festival exhibitions. At Zemanta, he was responsible for initial product development and go-to market, as well as for developing the international team of investors, executives and advisors. He mentors start-ups in several global and local accelerators. 

Varga Tamás Linkedin profile

About  Varga

He started his career as business developer for online media at Hungarian media company Sanoma Media Budapest. He joined at the beginning of 2013, he is head of the international expansion of the portal.

Bistra Kumbaroska
Impact Hub Vienna

About Bistra

Bistra Kumbaroska, a global tracker, community innovator and a poet, Bistra spends her time inspiring, witnessing and supporting courageous steps made by humans. In 2008, Bistra became part of a youth movement that resulted with creating today's most popular web portal in CEE Region: Mladi Info (, enabling hundreds of young people to get access to free education, mobility and grants in a fully transparent way.

Her passion for working with youth took her on a journey in Slovenia, Africa, Asia, and finally Austria, where she is now a regional program coordinator for two acceleration programs enabling social entrepreneurs in CEE region to scale their social start-ups.  She has organized, participated and shared her experience at numerous international conferences and summits including TEDxDonauinsel, European Youth Awards, Social Impact Award Macedonia, Global Social Business Summit Vienna, Austria; Social Innovation Expo Slovenia, International Conference of Social Innovation - Lahore, Pakistan; Challenge:Future Summit 2012/2013.


Ulla Hudina
European Commission Representation in Slovenia Linkedin profile

About Ulla

Ulla Hudina has been working on SME access to finance issues for more than 10 years, particularly venture capital as an increasingly important alternative source of finance. Prior to joining the European Commission Representation in Slovenia in 2012, she was working on venture capital policies and instruments in the European Commission Directorate-General for Enterprise and Industry. She was also working for an international syndication department in a commercial bank. Ulla holds a Master’s degree in European Economic Studies and a Master’s degree in Macroeconomic Policy and Financial Markets; as passionate as she is about venture capital she is also fluent in six languages.

Igor Alfirević
S&T Slovenia Linkedin profile

About Igor

Igor Alfirević is a senior software solution architect in S&T Slovenija’s consulting division. He has more than 15 years of experience in complex and demanding software projects, and is primarily involved in projects and consulting work concerning the analysis, design and implementation of complex software solutions in Slovenia and abroad.
In the past 10 years, he has been involved in various military software projects (Battle Management Software, Tactical Communications over tactical radios, communication protocols, Patria AMV 8x8 and LIV Cobra vehicle sensor integration).
In the scope of his master thesis at the University of Ljubljana, he developed a prototype electronic toll system based on MISTER (Minimum Interoperability Specifications for Tolling on European Roads) recommendations.

Fabian Bohdziul
MCI Linkedin profile

About Fabian

Fabian Bohdziul, investment Banking, Private Equity, Corporate Finance professional with track record of successful projects, including complex transactions supported by comprehensive financial education and professional experience. 
Full range of financial, general management and negotiations skills gained in investment projects performed in wide range of industries on domestic and international level. 10 years’ experience with financial background with relevant focus on mergers and acquisitions, project finance, valuation and modeling, financial structuring and public offerings.

​Chris Chabot
Chief Program Officer, Fiedler Capital Linkedin profile

Chris Chabot is a true innovator, having gathered comprehensive experience by leading the International Developer Relations at Twitter, and previously driving developer adoption, leading the OpenSocial, Google Buzz, Google Friend Connect and Google+ Developer Relations teams at Google.
Chris is also well connected to the startup world, mentoring teams at Seedcamp, TechStars, Oxygen Accelerator, and being a former startup founder himself.
Chris is more than a tech guy, as he is able to translate technical innovation into behavioral changes that help users, startups and companies worldwide reach their goals of communicating their message, finding market fit, driving adoption through partnerships, and creating scalable solutions.
He frequently speaks at leading European conferences and for large companies on the topic of innovation, startup ecosystem, mobile trends, digital strategy, cloud and developer topics. Working closely with the leading Venture Capital firms and Startup Accelerators in Europe, he mentors their startups on pitching, partnership, communication, and growth strategies.
As a digital strategist he consulted with leading mobile telco’s and banks to create digital strategies that turn disruptive market forces into new opportunities.

Tomasz Rudolf
D-RAFT Linkedin profile

Tomasz Rudolf is a co-founder at D-RAFT Corporate Accelerator and Chief Innovation Igniter at the consulting company Innovatika, responsible for revenue growth through innovation and design. He uses his passion for innovation, visual thinking and customer value creation to help top management teams discover opportunities and turn them into profits.
He set up his first business when he was 19. At the age of 22, he was already managing a 40-person student consulting company in Cologne, Germany. Since then, he has led consulting projects in US, Germany, Sweden, Italy, France, Saudi Arabia and Poland.
He also enjoys turning leading management books and theories into practical tools that help teams with strategy development and revenue generation.
His specialties lie in top management consulting, revenue growth, strategy development, disruptive innovation, Blue Ocean Strategy, Business Model Innovation, customer experience design, visual thinking and facilitation.
He is a frequent speaker and workshop facilitator in the field of innovation, strategy and revenue growth.

Gabriel Dombri
Startcelerate Linkedin profile

Gabriel Dombri is a digital entrepreneur based in London, with over 7 years of doing digital marketing consultancy in Romania, Italy, Ireland and the UK. He is a Digital Marketing professional, specialised in Strategy development for Start-ups and Optimising Conversion Rates for SMBs. Inbound Marketing great fan, and solutions creator in Business Performance.
He is co-founder at Couture Spot and Startcelerate. Always doing strategy and finding ways to make every important bit of a high-flying project stick to the same vision. Gets things done and people unstuck.
Lately, he has been focused on spotting anomalies in business systems and solving incoherences in companies' marketing.
He is always available to help young creative people do something practical with their creativity.

Kate Leto
D.Labs Linkedin profile

Kate Leto has more than seventeen years of product and marketing experience with Yahoo! and MOO.COM. She recently focused on strategic product consulting for venture-backed start-ups and business change initiatives in larger organisations.
She is a firm believer in UX and user research, and has experience leading quantitative and qualitative marketing and product research in US, UK and EU. After all, there's no use building something unless the customer wants, needs, can use and ideally enjoys the product!
She is currently the Chief Client Officer at D.Labs, focusing on existing and new clients, internal processes and resources to scale this growing organisation.
Her areas of focus include:
  • Working with leaders in organisations to build structured, product-led organisations, including assessing product and process needs and requirements.
  • Coaching CEOs, founders and other senior managers on product and business strategy, staffing and organisational development.
  • Leading product/market fit efforts (discovery, testing, prototyping, development and iteration).
  • Developing and selling product roadmaps (short and long-term).
  • Introducing, coaching and managing agile product development.
  • Building and leading multi-functional teams, including product, design, UX, engineering, user research, and marketing.
Tactical experiences in entire product lifecycle for online and physical products, including market analysis, business case development, product conception, feature definition, development, go-to-market, launch and iteration.