Key figures including Kersti Kaljulaid, Maive Rute, Rainer Saks, Martin Villig, Risto Siilasmaa, Mikko Silventola, and several well known venture capitalists will speak at the European Business Angels annual meeting held for the first time in Tallinn.

More than 500 investors, startup founders, and members of the startup community are in Tallinn for the three-day EBAN Congress Tallinn 2024, led by the Estonian and European Business Angels Network. Nearly 70 speakers will take the stage at Europe’s top business angel event of the year. Visitors from 50 different countries are expected, and 43 selected startups will present their ideas to international angel investors, hoping to raise funds in the future.

According to Jacopo Losso, head of the European Business Angels Network EBAN, Estonia has created an excellent environment for the development of startups, and local investors stand out even in Europe. “We have followed the progress of the Estonian angel investor network for years and have seen how the local startup world operates and investments in high-risk ventures grow. Your annual investment volume is impressive, and you have done great work supporting new enterprises for years. I am delighted that we have finally brought the congress to Tallinn, and we can celebrate excellent cooperation and interact with a large investor community together,” Losso explains.

At the European Business Angels annual congress, discussions will focus on digital innovation spanning three decades following Skype‘s success and new challenges in business amid a tense geopolitical situation. Cybersecurity expert Rainer Saks will discuss this topic in the context of the Ukraine war. Former President of the Republic of Estonia Kersti Kaljulaid and founder of the venture capital fund Karma Ventures Margus Uudam will hold a panel discussion on maintaining peace. Other notable Estonian speakers include Bolt co-founder Martin Villig, Kadri Tammai from NATO/Diana Accelerator, Maive Rute from the European Commission, Kärt Siilats from venture capital firm Mojo Capital, and several experienced investors.

Among foreign guests, speakers include former Nokia CEO and current founder of cybersecurity company WithSecure Risto Siilasmaa, one of Bolt’s first investors Mikko Silventola, Swiss Post Ventures head and investor in Estonian startups Ivo Ronner, as well as Nora Bavey, whose fund invests in companies founded by women, and Davis Siksnans, founder of Latvia’s first unicorn company Printful.

EBAN Congress is Held in Outstanding Locations for Investments and Startups
Losso notes that bringing the conference to Estonia has long been on the agenda, and the entire EBAN team is thrilled to be in Tallinn to meet with our startups and investors. “The success story of Estonian startups deserves greater attention, and we are honored to host this major event here,” says Losso.

Anu Oks, CEO of the Estonian Business Angels Network EstBAN, says it is crucial for local investors and startups to be visible internationally. “The EBAN Congress is a very important part of excellent international attention. We have the opportunity to showcase Estonia from its best side to hundreds of foreign guests. Our investors can interact with foreign investors, and investors can visit our startups and hear our thoughts,” Oks explains.

According to Anu Oks, Estonia is often too modest in showcasing its success, but a major investor meeting helps change that. “We can show how amazing startups in Estonia are,” Oks confirms.

Estonia gained the opportunity to host the European investor annual congress thanks to its active local startup scene and investor community. Estonia has also been named the country with the most unicorns per capita in the world. Last year, the EBAN annual congress took place in Thessaloniki, Greece, in 2022 in Cork, Ireland, previously in Brussels, Belgium, and in 2019 in Helsinki, Finland. This year marks the 24th EBAN annual congress.

The Estonian Business Angels Network (EstBAN) was founded in 2012 and is one of the most active angel investor networks in our region, seeking investment opportunities in Estonia and neighboring countries to increase the volume and quality of local seed-phase investments. EstBAN is a non-profit organization run by over 300 members.

The European Business Angels Network (EBAN) is Europe’s leading early-stage investor network, connecting and supporting business angels, early-stage investors, entrepreneurs, and corporations worldwide. EBAN has over 150 members in more than 50 countries. The EBAN annual congress is the network’s flagship event.

Business angels are investors who invest personal capital in early-stage companies.

The congress is co-funded by the European Union and Invest-EU, sponsored by Swedbank and Dealum. Event partners include Delfi Meedia, EAS, Latitude59, the city of Tallinn, Civitta, Invest Estonia, Tehnopol, Visit Estonia, Bolt, Tenity, OCCO, and the E-Residency Program.