Friday, 24 June 2022

Hellenic International Business Angels Summit (HIBAS) draws investors from around the world


Hellenic International Business Angels Summit (HIBAS) draws investors from around the world

International investors, Greek startups meet in Athens
Hellenic International Business Angels Summit (HIBAS) draws
investors from around the world

Athens, 24 June 2022 | With the participation of 60 business angels from around the world, 20 Greek start-ups, as well as policy makers, corporate leaders and media representatives, the Hellenic International Business Angels Summit (HIBAS-2022) was held in Athens on June 23 and 24, 2022.

The HIBAS 2022 Conference was co-organized by Enterprise Greece, the Hellenic Business Angels Network (HeBAN) and the European Business Angels Network (EBAN).

The event represented an important occasion for Greece’s technology industry, providing business angels, venture capital funds, and accelerators an opportunity to connect with the Greek startup ecosystem during scheduled pitching sessions and networking events. Notably, more than 110 Greek startups submitted applications to participate in the pitching sessions, with the conference attracting an audience of 250 participants in-person.

The first day of the conference was focused on presentations highlighting the trends that are shaping the world and affecting economic and technological development. On the second day of the conference, in addition to the pitching sessions, two workshops were held focusing on:

• Venture capitalists as growth catalysts: from co-investment to exit
• Deconstructing business angel investments: introduction to initial stage investments

Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs for Economic Diplomacy and Extroversion, Kostas Fragogiannis, said: "With the hard work and focused efforts of the last three years, Greece has restored its reputation as a reliable, dynamic and developed economy. And it is well known that a key feature of the economic vitality of developed economies are business angels. In 2021, the Greek startup ecosystem was characterized by record financing, business exits and acquisitions, with the same momentum continuing in 2022. I am certain the conference contributed to that by introducing business angels to Greek startups and, as they should, invest in them and promote them on a global level."

Further, Secretary General for International Economic Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Chairman of Enterprise Greece, Yannis Smyrlis, said: "The innovation and technology sector is one of the most critical industries in the Greek economy. Demand for innovative tech, in both the public and private sectors worldwide, will only continue to grow. And the Greek tech sector is well positioned to meet that demand: the start-up ecosystem is developing quickly, Greece’s work force is highly educated, especially in the STEM fields, and the country has an enviable geostrategic location with well-developed infrastructure. Building up the angel investor network will play a crucial role in getting our Greek start-ups running at top speed. And our aim here today is for you to get to know the Greek ecosystem – as part of the greater region – and expand your opportunities for networking, collaborations, and productive investment."

Georgios Filiopoulos, CEO of Enterprise Greece, said: "Greece is becoming a technology hub for Southeast Europe. The Greek ecosystem is growing steadily and is making a significant contribution to our national economy, and we believe that it will be one of the most important growth factors in the future. That is why at Enterprise Greece we are constantly trying to support technology enterprises and Greek start-ups in every way. We are proud to host and organize the Hellenic International Business Angels Summit in Athens, and I am sure that this conference will contribute substantially to the further development of the technology sector. Moreover, we are also organizing the 2023 annual conference of the European Business Angels Network.”

In his remarks, EBAN Director Jacopo Losso, said: “We are delighted to be in Athens for this important event, which we co-hosted with our member association, the Hellenic Business Angels Network, and Enterprise Greece. Business Angels from all over the world are here in Athens to explore investment opportunities in startups, share international practices, and to expand and upgrade their network of contacts. I would like to thank the co-organizers, the sponsors, as well as all the representatives of the Greek business and investment community, for their contribution to the organization of HIBAS. We look forward to our return to Athens in 2023, where on April 24-26, the EBAN Annual Congress will be held, again in collaboration with Enterprise Greece and the Hellenic Business Angels Network."

EBAN Executive Member and member of the Board of HeBAN, Panagiotis Ketikidis, noted: "The investment interest of business angels, combined with the efforts of other stakeholders, can stimulate the startup ecosystem and create jobs, improve competitiveness and promote development. It is important, at this moment, for all enterprises of the Greek ecosystem to continue the same path and try to overcome any obstacles, adopting a new perspective. On behalf of all members of the Hellenic Business Angels Network, I would like to thank all the participants and supporters for their contribution to the HIBAS 2022 Conference."

Participants at this year’s conference agreed to meet again in Athens next April at the Pan-European Conference of Business Angels (EBAN Annual Congress 2023). The EBAN Annual Congress is the most important yearly event in Europe for startups seeking investment. More than 500 investors from all over the world are expected in Greece to meet with Greek startups, young Greek entrepreneurs, and acquaint themselves with the Greek startup ecosystem.