On Thursday 21 March, PwC's Accelerator held its third "Local to Global" Expo, attended by 23 high-tech companies from Europe, North America and Russia. These high-growth companies presented their disruptive technologies and innovative value proposition to an audience of over 200 potential business partners (i.e. institutional investors, multinationals and academics).
"The latest studies conducted in Europe have confirmed two major challenges - investors lack qualitative projects and entrepreneurs look for smart financial solutions. We've organised the third 'local to global' Expo to bridge the gap between them," said Laurent Probst, partner, PwC Luxembourg.
The objective of this event was to provide an overview of what European high-potential companies need to expand while bringing them expertise, business networks and fundraising solutions. These firms represent the economic development that Europe needs, however a rethinking of the financing models in place is required. "PwC Luxembourg allows innovative companies, willing to achieve an international reach to adapt their current strategy and business model," highlighted Alexandre Rhea, partner, PwC Luxembourg, and CEO, PwC's Accelerator.
Etienne Schneider, Minister of the Economy and Foreign Trade, presented the competitive advantage for both investors and entrepreneurs of doing business in Luxembourg. Minister Schneider noted: "PwC's Accelerator highlights one of the key strengths of Luxembourg; our country provides a perfect bridge for European companies to develop internationally and a proven platform for foreign companies looking to expand in Europe. (...) PwC's Accelerator can create further value-added to Luxembourg."
In his speech about the challenges and opportunities for both the funds industry and companies, Richard Pelly, CEO of the European Investment Fund (EIF) said: "Capital investment is (re)emerging, bringing new models and new teams."
According to him, European and national public initiatives on the one side and the involvement of private investors on the other side are the right combination to create a favourable environment for the economic development of companies.
Finally, Carlos Ramón, a recognised expert in globalisation, moderated a roundtable which brought together representatives of large funds including Eurosia, Bertelsmann Digital Media, Texas Pacific Group, Zouk Capital and Iris Capital. Together they tackled the essential topic of the mid and long-term evolution of the relations between investors and entrepreneurs.
The day ended with the Local to Global award ceremony, in which the investors' audience voted during the course of the day.
The Best Elevator Pitch prize, which goes to the best presentation, was awarded to Abionic by Loïc Kubitza, Corporate Finance director, PwC Luxembourg. Abionic develops and sells diagnostic device that provides user-friendly allergy diagnoses. The Swiss-based company was founded by young engineers of "Ecole Polytechnique" of Lausanne.
The Most Promising Company award went to TruEnergy, handed out by Alexandre Rhea. This Belgian company provides solutions for the efficient and clean conversion of all kinds of biomass and carbon containing waste into useful energy, i.e. electricity and heat.
The "Coup de Cœur" award was given to Wacht & Troy by Laurent Probst. The company is based in Sweden and is a jewellery brand owner; with the business idea to offer a range of high-end jewellery brands standing for novelty, quality and contemporary style.
The fourth 'Local to Global' Expo will take place on 24 October 2013.
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