E: hello@empact-ventures.com

Tag: Cambridge

Press Releases

Press Release: Super Connect initiative launched to enable high growth startups to access larger organisations and funders

A new national initiative today launches in the UK delivered by tech super connectors Empact Ventures and Hays UK&I, the leading recruitment experts that aims to support high growth potential tech startups and scale-ups to access decision-makers at larger organisations.

The initiative sponsored by Mazars, Agile Automations, Gridizen, and Linkilaw also aims to help them to access a blended set of funding providers from angels investors to venture capitalists, grant providers and loan funds to support their long-term sustainability.

It is made of a series of events taking place in 5 UK cities and towns including Bournemouth, Bristol, London, Cambridge and Leeds in 2018 / 2019 with other cities likely to be added beyond July 2019. Each location will benefit from the Super Connect events including a 1-day training lab (Venture Labs) to prepare startups to pitch to decision-makers and pitching events (Pitch Days) to pitch and get into early discussions with decision makers in corporates, SMEs and funding providers.

Tech startups and scale-ups are welcome from data science (including AI, Machine Learning, Analytics), Internet of Things, Cyber Security, BlockChain, FinTech, MedTech, AR / VR and enterprise applications.

At all events the Empact Ventures team collects the specific needs, challenges and interests of the decision-makers before globally scouting and inviting the best emerging tech startups and scale-ups to pitch at the events that match these requirements. They facilitate the match-making process by giving every attending a ‘Super Connect Sheet’ to help them identify the right people they should talk on the day before making introductions in-person at the events, and email introductions after them.

Empact Ventures and Hays have already held three successful pilot Venture Labs and Pitch Days in Bournemouth and London over the past 6 months which created many outcomes for those involved. These included pilots and trials of startups’ tech in SMEs, joint ventures between two startups in the events industry, new partnerships established between two SMEs in the FinTech space, investment by angel investors into some of the startups, new contracts being secured and many more outcomes currently in advanced discussions.

There are also a number of partners supporting Super Connect across the UK including: Seedrs, Syndicate Room, AWS Activate, The Venus Awards, Solid State Group, Breakthrough Associates, BizBritain, Zealous Digital, StartupU, eOffice, GEN UK, Human, I-COM Global, Dorst LEP, BOMO Festival, Leeds Digital Festival, Weissman and more.

One of the tech startups that has participated in the past few Super Connect Pitch Days is the AI-powered RetailTech startup Shoppar who is putting customer data into physical retail stores across the UK to help them better understand their shoppers. It is currently working with clients including Sky and Hugo Boss. The technology uses computer vision and WI-FI analytics to understand various data points and help to deliver usable metrics to improve campaign delivery and convert sales opportunities.

Peter Ward its Co-Founder and CEO added that the pilot Super Connect Pitch Days had “a range of impressive startups, support business specialists and investors in attendance, creating a well-rounded event that made very good use of a day out the office.”

Its organiser Kosta Mavroulakis, the Founder and CEO of Empact Ventures is an experienced startup facilitator who has previously helped to lead StartUp Britain as its former Campaign Manager and mentors many tech startups.

He believes that “while tech startups and scale-ups have access to an abundance of investment opportunities in the UK, they still face the challenge of sourcing and securing new business development opportunities which also true for larger organisations. In both cases it can often be down to not knowing the right people and where to find them, though more importantly if they have a need to collaborate right now. Empact Ventures and Hays UK & I are both super connectors of technology and people respectively who are committed to supporting the growth of small to large organisations, and it is for this reason why we jointly created Super Connect”.

James Milligan, Director at Hays Digital Technology and IT, who has worked closely with Empact Ventures to co-design the initiative points out that Hays is committed to helping the UK tech ecosystem to address the challenge associated with accessing rock star talent as highlighted in the recent Tech Nations report.

“We are thrilled to be working in partnership with Empact on the new Super Connect series and are confident that this initiative will encourage professionals with a passion for technology, to better engage, connect and collaborate with others within the industry. Our Digital Technology business across the UK is now engaging more with smaller tech companies than it ever has before. Providing quality insight and advice to organisations of all sizes on skills, recruitment trends and workforce planning within the technology industry is a priority for us and our research and reports, like the Hays UK Salary and Recruiting Trends 2019 Guide aid in supporting our expertise. We are also looking forward to future Tech Pitch Days as these offer a unique opportunity to engage with the next generation of technology companies. Additionally we hope to strengthen relationships with our current clients by introducing them to relevant start-up organisations at these brilliant events.”

Lara Brennan, Senior Manager at Mazars added that “it is an absolute pleasure to sponsor the initiative and have the opportunity to talk to start-ups and scale-ups about their accounting and tax challenges. It is always great to connect with like-minded entrepreneurs and discuss their business plans and innovations”

Martin Keelagher, CEO of Agile Automations who was a sponsor and also pitched as a scale-up added that as “Agile Automations embarks on its national sponsorship of Empact Ventures scale up and investment roadshow, we look forward to forming new partnerships and building long-standing relationships, from a diverse and varied amount of sectors”.

Moving forward the national startup initiative will take :

  • 14th November 2018 – London – Super Connect Pitch Day
  • 23rd January 2019 – Cambridge – Super Connect Pitch Day
  • 5th March 2019 – Bristol – Venture Lab
  • 30th April 2019 – Leeds – Venture Lab
  • 2nd May 2019 – Leeds – Super Connect Pitch Day
  • 5th July 2019 – Bristol – Super Connect Pitch Day

If you are a tech startup, scale-up, corporate, SMEs or funding provider who would like to get involved in Super Connect and its events, please visit www.superconnectseries.com

Notes to the Editor

To download a PDF of this press release click here

Press Enquiries

For all press-related enquiries, please contact Empact Ventures Ltd, CEO Kosta Mavroulakis (kosta@empact-ventures.com , 07731 768769)

About Empact Ventures

Empact Ventures are global super connectors who deliver unique startup initiatives, scout for world class innovation and support the growth of startups to scale-ups

  • Delivering Startup Initiatives to engage and super connect startupr, scale-ups, SMEs, corporates, OGOs and funding providers
  • Tech Scouting for major brands, SMEs and NGOs seeking to address their challenges through collaborative partnerships with the best global tech startups and scale-ups
  • Super Connectors for Startups and Scale-ups to secure the best partners, exposure, traction, funding and clients by opening doors to the right people, opportunities and resources

For more information visit www.empact.ventures

About Hays plc

Hays plc (the “Group”) is a leading global professional recruiting group and is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. The Group is the expert at recruiting qualified, professional and skilled people worldwide, being the market leader in the UK and Asia Pacific and one of the market leaders in Continental Europe and Latin America. The Group operates across the private and public sectors, dealing in permanent positions, contract roles and temporary assignments. As at 30 June 2018 the Group employed 10,978 staff operating from 257 offices in 33 markets across 20 specialisms. For the year ended 30 June 2018:

– the Group reported net fees of £1.072 billion and operating profit (pre-exceptional items) of £243.4 million;

– the Group placed around 77,000 candidates into permanent jobs and around 244,000 people into temporary assignments;

– 19% of Group net fees were generated in Australia & New Zealand, 26% in Germany, 24% in United Kingdom & Ireland and 31% in Rest of World (RoW);

– the temporary placement business represented 58% of net fees and the permanent placement business represented 42% of net fees;

– Hays operates in the following countries: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Chile, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UAE, the UK and the USA

For more information visit https://www.hays.co.uk


Review: Cambridge Venture Lab (31/07/2018)

As part of its national partnership with Hays plc, Empact Ventures hosted its third Startup Venture Lab of 2018 at the Bradfield Centre in Cambridge sponsored by Linkilaw, Syndicate Room, Amazon AWS Activate and C6(n).

The event was attended by start-ups, scale-ups, investment firms, SMEs, corporates and non-profits  who came together to be inspired and educated about taking a startup to scale-up.

In typical Empact Ventures fashion, there was a focus on super connecting people with mutual interests to each other before, during and after the event. It brought a mix of people and companies from entrepreneurial ecosystems including Liverpool, London and Bournemouth to the Cambridge area with others join from the East England in Norwich and Ipswich. This led to startups like Hollabox connecting with private investors and investment platforms like Syndicate Room to explore support with their fundraising round, while TicketPass were able to sit down to explore a partnership with a global non-profit, the Confederation of Independent Football Associations (CONIFA).

The event was kicked off by Empact Ventures’ Founder and CEO Kosta Mavroulakis (previously based in Cambridge in 2011-2012) and will be working his team and Hays to super-connect the local DNA built around Cambridge’s establish entrepreneurial ecosystem with wider local ecosystems across the UK. He was then joined on stage by an inspiring and entertaining introduction from Michael Hall, Chairman of Bournemouth-based firm C6(n) and Simon Arnold, Senior Management for Digital Technology Recruitment in the England at Hays plc, two of the event’s sponsors.

Keynote speaker Professor Alan Barrell (author of ‘Show Me the Money: How to Raise the Cash to Get Your Business Off the Ground’) then opened the event with an inspiring talk that offered valuable advice about finding finance for your venture, focusing on alternative finance and the key traits of a successful entrepreneur.

Simon Arnold Senior Manager for Digital Technology recruitment in Cambridge delivered an a talk on ‘Building a Rockstar Team’ who spoke about the shift in the recruitment market from the ‘Advertise and Apply’ model, where recruiters rely on the quantity and quality of job applications, to the ‘Find and Engage’ model, where recruiters use sourcing tools and data analytics to find the right candidates, including passive jobseekers.

He closed off his talk with an explanation of Hays’ new startup recruitment service designed with Empact Ventures to support startups from Seed to Series A-D to build a rockstar team to support their growth.

Alexandra Isenegger Co-Founder and CEO of Linkilaw.com who featured in the ‘Forbes 30 under 30’ who delivered an educational session on ‘Getting Your Startup Legal Right’ and gave some key tips for startups beginning their journey.

There was then three panel sessions that offered attendees the opportunity to learn and interact with a range of tech founders and experts around several key themes. This included the ‘Building an Outstanding Tech Product’ panel that featured insights from startups like Cambridge-based Accredible (Alan Heppenstall, Co-Founder & CTO) and Series C scale-up Matrixx Software (UK Director of Engineering). This was followed by the ‘Closing B2B Deals’ panel with Michael Hall (Chairman, C6(n) Technology) and Nigel Sandbrook (Former Head of Manufacturing East England at Lloyds Bank), and ‘The Investment Pathway’ panel with Scott Simpkin (Senior Campaigns Associate at Seedrs), Cambridge-based James Sore (Chief Investment Officer at Syndicate Room) and Ian Woodgate (Angel Investor) chaired by Kris Jones (Founder of Tech Velocity Norwich).

The event was closed with two pitch sessions that saw startups like TicketPass, Hollabox, Accredible and Shoppar pitch to investors, SMEs and other experts in the audience, with Hollabox winning the prize of Alan Barrell’s ‘Show Me the Money’ book for the best pitch.

The feedback received following the event has been very positive as shown below:

“Just a note to say how pleased I was to participate in the EMPACT Venture Lab at Bradfield Centre Trinity Science Park recently. Clearly the agenda and selection of people and panellists – and the creative and expectant environment were right “on the nail” for the entrepreneurs present. The mixture of short keynotes, panels and discussion – and entrepreneur engagement was very well balanced. In the context of the ever growing Cambridge Hi-Tech Cluster – bringing Venture Labs to support the newest of companies and those seeking to scale is a very positive initiative and Cambridge could do with even more. The numbers of accelerators, incubators, innovation centres and start ups is still growing – and there will in future be no lack of opportunity to support more innovative adventurers. The investment community should also be very pleased that more support is on board through EMPACT Venture Labs to enable more entrepreneurs to become investment ready. Beyond Cambridge there is great potential indeed in places not yet as close to having an entrepreneurial ecosystem as that which has evolved over some sixty years in Cambridge. So EMPACT has a lot to do around the UK! I commend and recommend EMPACT and the team to anyone not yet familiar and in need of inspiration and solid advice and help in equal measure”. Professor Alan Barrell, Chairman Cambridge Worldwide Associates and International Fellow University of Essex Business School.

“My first Empact Ventures event exceeded my expectations. Meeting other innovative start ups, as well as inspirational individuals from a variety of industries was hugely beneficial to me. I left the event not only feeling empowered, but as if there was a strong sense of camaraderie amongst all the attendees” Emily Cruickshank, Head of Content at Hollabox.com

“The Empact Venture Lab in Cambridge was the second event I had been to which was packed with  speeches from Alan Barrell and Michael Hall from C6(n) who passed on the knowledge that would have taken me years to acquire. I felt Empact worked hard on mapping the right people to speak to each other making the environment once again super easy to connect. Overall the event was worth it, I definitely recommend getting in touch with Empact Ventures before the next Venture lab, I will certainly be attending future ones” Stephen Mappourides, aspiring entrepreneur.

Overall, it was an insightful day packed with various talks, panel sessions and pitches, with 22 speakers and panelists from startup to scale-up, SME to corporate and other experts.

If you are interested in attending Empact’s next event with Hays, our Corporate-Investor Pitch Day in Bournemouth on 11th October 2018 and London on 15th November 2018, please click here and if you have any questions contact Raphael Weninger, Head of Ventures at Empact Ventures on r@empact-ventures.com