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Cyprus Seeds Organises Networking Event on Technology Startups

Cyprus Seeds Organises Networking Event on Technology Startups

Cyprus Seeds invited all research Teams who applied to the first CALL of the Cyprus Seeds Program as well as alumni of the MIT Club, Harvard Club, the Oxford and Cambridge Clubs in Cyprus, to a Panel Discussion and a Networking Event, on Thursday, 11th July 2019.

The keynote speaker of the Event was Anna Protopapas, Board Member of Cyprus Seeds and President and CEO of Mersana Therapeutics, a start-up biotech company in the USA, developing novel therapies for cancer patients.

During the Event, Protopapas discussed the ways to grow the startup ecosystem in Cyprus. She highlighted that efforts, such as Cyprus Seeds, can contribute immensely to this effort. Also, based on her experience, she gave to the audience six pieces of valuable advice for successful start-ups; namely:

(1) To be passionate believers of their ideas (2) Compellingly Communication (3) Get lots of input (4) Have a team who you trust (5) Involve investors (6) Ensure that you do not do it all by yourself.  

Ms Protopapas’ presentation was followed by a very dynamic Panel Discussion which was tackled topics including (a) What are the “softer” issues that often break a venture irrespectively of the strength of the business plan? (b)How corporate engagement can help Cypriot startups and University spinoffs?

The 5 panelists were representatives from the private and public sector; Kyriakos Kokkinos, National Chief Scientist of Research & Innovation and Chairman o RIF, Maria Tsiakka, General Manager of Tsiakkastel Office Line, Dr. George Kassinis, Associate Professor of Strategy, School of Economics and Management, University of Cyprus, Andreas Papadopoulos, Chairman of Junior Achievement Cyprus and Business Manager at Hellenic Bank and Panis Pieri, Founder of the startup blog Disrupt Cyprus.com.

Cyprus Seeds is a non-profit initiative aiming to support the commercialization of innovative academic research in Cypriot universities and research institutions, through seed funding in the form of grants, one-to-one mentoring combined with entrepreneurial training and networking outside Cyprus. Recently, Cyprus Seeds announced the seven teams that have been selected from a rigorous evaluation procedure.

Three (3) projects are from the University of Cyprus, two (2) are from the Cyprus University of Technology and two (2) from the Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics.  Four (4) out the seven (7) to be supported by Cyprus Seeds are in the Healthcare sector, two (2) are from the Energy and Water and one (1) from the Devices & Materials sector.

The Event on ‘WHAT MAKES OR BREAKS START UPS’ is one of many events which Cyprus Seeds organized in Cyprus since the launching of the Program, in March 2019, in an effort to offer knowledge and experiences on the topic of commercializing research. More events will follow before the end of the 12 Month Funding period of the Cyprus Seeds Program, which is July 2020.

Cyprus Seeds has a wide network of reeks and Cypriots of the Diaspora, in the USA, who have become very successful entrepreneurs through commercializing their innovative research. Moreover, Cyprus Seeds is collaborating with the MIT Enterprise Forum Greece and has a huge network from the network of the MIT alumni. It is the intention to invite to Cyprus some of these successful entrepreneurs/investors to share their experiences.

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