Inspirational, exciting, and super busy – that’s what the first operational year of Urban Tech Helsinki has been from a project manager’s point of view. In fact, it hasn’t been a full year since we started, only eight months, but it feels like at least two years have been crammed into this period. Our operational team in Aalto Startup Center and the City of Helsinki has been performing solidly running the incubator and has achieved all the targets so far.
What have we done, then? Let’s put some numbers out:
- 1st call opened in June
- 46 applications from
- 13 startups in our first batch, out of which
- 6 international teams
- 6 with a female founder
- 4 with research background
With our 1st batch, we have been going through the incubation program for the first time. Our autumn included for example
- Dozens of advisory, coaching and info sessions to help our startups’ journey
- 12 kickstarts of the weeks to go through the practicalities
- 12 startup power hours to build capabilities and community
- 4 impact sessions to learn and measure the true value of our impact startups
- 3 meetings with City of Helsinki specialists from Testbed.Helsinki, Forum Virium and NewCo
- 2 networking lunches to meet the Maria 01 networks
- 2 Meet & Mix events to create an Urban Tech Helsinki ecosystem
- 1 Winds of Change event to showcase the support network we have in Aalto University, University of Helsinki and Metropolia UAS – and to present the first startups to the world
All in all, we reached almost 400 participants in our public events. That’s a number we are proud of!
Of course, there’s also the “back office” work, so we have been working with our advisory board and steering group, meeting with our partner networks, creating contacts with Urban Tech programs in Copenhagen and Turku, participated and presented in a multitude of events, from Slush to BusinessFinland, Helsinki Partners and KiraHub sessions. The power of the networks, both old and new, has been proven already during these few months, as we have been able to share some valuable connections and opportunities for our startups.
This is a good time to thank each and every person we have had the privilege to work with so far. We have been able to create an incubation program that brings true value to both startups as well as the partners and the wider Helsinki region ecosystem. The work continues with our second call starting in January. You will also be able to meet us on our partner campuses with our pre-incubation bootcamps next year. Looking forward to continuing the work together to make the cities of tomorrow smarter and more sustainable!
Kaisa & Urban Tech Helsinki Team