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The international IT firm delaware has decided this year to organise its annual pitching competition in Luxembourg. Called The Pitch Arena, this initiative is a unique opportunity for startups to showcase their solution in a front a qualified audience and get the chance to receive funding from delaware corporate venture funds. Benjamin Hourte, in charge of this project, answered our questions.

What is The Pitch Arena concept?

The Pitch Arena is an event organised by Venture by delaware, the entity created by delaware to manage its Corporate Venture Funds. This event is an important ceremony within our incubation program. It aims to support and invest in startups that are aligned with delaware's business challenges and customer needs. 

The Pitch Arena consists of two phases: a selection phase and a pitch phase. In the selection phase, delaware invites startups to apply for the program and evaluates their fit with the predefined criteria. These criteria include the relevance of the solution, the market potential, the team composition, and the alignment with delaware's values and vision.

The selected startups are then invited to the pitch phase, where they present their solution to a jury of delaware experts, customers, and partners. The jury selects the best startups to receive funding and mentoring from delaware. 

The program is a unique opportunity for startups to transform and accelerate their dream project by offering financial support, market access, and technological expertise.

These aspects are typical challenges for startups and scale ups. The goal is to turn their ideas into a marketable, scalable, and sustainable service and generate their first revenue streams. delaware does not do this alone, but collaborates with other VCs or Business Angels from the region. 

Why did delaware choose Luxembourg for the 2023 edition?

delaware chose Luxembourg as the location for the 2023 edition of the Pitch Arena for several reasons.

Luxembourg is an attractive destination for investing in startups, especially in the fintech and insurtech sectors. These sectors present an opportunity for delaware to collaborate with innovative startups, using their technologies and expertise to drive digital transformation, enhance operational efficiency, and offer new digital services to its customers. 

Luxembourg's startup ecosystem is one of the most attractive in Europe, ranking among the top 20 in the world. The country's stability, investor-friendly regulations, and international expertise make it an appealing destination for investors but also for the FinTech/Insurtech market

To finish, Luxembourg offers a vibrant and diverse community of entrepreneurs, investors, and support organisations.

delaware can benefit from the existing networks and platforms that foster innovation and collaboration, such as the Luxembourg House of Financial Technology (LHoFT), the Technoport, the Luxembourg-City Incubator (LCI), the Luxembourg Business Angel Network (LBAN), the Luxembourg Private Equity & Venture Capital Association (LPEA), and the governmental institutions (Luxinnovation, Startup Luxembourg, etc.)

How does delaware interact with Luxembourg's startup ecosystem?

delaware has a long-term strategy when dealing with innovation. The Pitch Arena is a flagship event organised by Venture by delaware, but it is not the only way delaware interacts with Luxembourg's startup ecosystem. delaware also engages in other activities, such as: 

  • Participating in and sponsoring events and initiatives that promote entrepreneurship and innovation, such as hackathons, workshops, and conferences. 
  • Providing mentoring and coaching to startups and entrepreneurs, sharing its knowledge and experience in various domains, such as cloud, data, AI, and ERP. 
  • Establishing partnerships and alliances with key players in the ecosystem, such as incubators, accelerators, universities, and research centers. 
  • Exploring opportunities for co-creation and co-innovation with startups, customers, and partners, leveraging delaware's capabilities and resources to develop new solutions and business models. 

By doing so, delaware aims to create value for its customers, its employees, and the society, while supporting the growth and development of the Luxembourgish startup ecosystem. 


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