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October 16, 2018

Thinking and acting globally: Russian startups held a presentation for Middle East investors

The first pitch session of Russian startups with investors from the Middle East countries was held at the Open Innovations exhibition. The East Bound competition was organized by VEB Innovations and the Skolkovo Foundation. The jury was chaired by Oleg Teplov, Director General of VEB Innovations.

Today the projects were presented by Motorica (functional prostheses for hands), SPARS (space rescue systems), Pay On Way (mobile payment system), Swarm (distributed data storage service), CommTrade (commodity trading web platform), Geosplit (technologies for oil and gas industry), Altell (information security).

The jury chose Motorica, a company that develops robotic prostheses for children and adults, as the winner. Motorica had previously been a finalist in the first series of the startup show "Idea in a Million", which VEB implemented together with NTV.

"Today we can note the growth of new technological projects in Russia. It is not so much about promising developments as about companies with finished products. However, the domestic market is often small for the full-scale deployment of the project and its payback period, so most technological start-ups need international expansion. Initiatives like East Bound promote Russian developments on the world market and expand exports of Russian high-tech goods and services. At the same time, young companies have a chance not only to scale and develop unique developments, but also to acquire competences for launching future successful enterprises," said Oleg Teplov, General Director of VEB Innovations.

In total, more than 50 applications from Russian high-tech companies were submitted to the East Bound competition, among which experts selected 21 most promising projects. The key criteria were readiness to export and enter foreign markets, as well as potential competitiveness in the global arena.

Alexey Ivanchenko, Deputy Chairman of Vnesheconombank, summing up the results of the pitch session, said: "It is good that we started the Open Innovations project by giving startups an opportunity to prove themselves. The main idea is to inform the investor how he or she will be able to earn money. It is very important to remember who you are making the presentation for, to focus on the business model, finance, competitive strategy". Alexey Ivanchenko also announced the launch of a new project together with VEB Innovations, which will help startups to present themselves better to potential investors: "It is good that you see yourself in the international arena. I don't believe in innovations, which only rely on the local market. Think and act globally!

The next pitch session at Open Innovations will take place on Tuesday with investors from India.

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