From 4-7 October, betahaus is hosting Coworking Week. This year's event is happening in Tirana with four full days of workshops, lectures, one-on-one consultancy sessions, and networking opportunities. Tirana is slated to be home of our new location in 2019. To celebrate the opening of betahaus | Tirana and get to know the Albanian startup ecosystem, we’re bringing together startup experts from all around Europe to exchange knowledge, discuss the sharing economy, and establish the future of work. Within Coworking Week, we will be bringing betabeer to Tirana along with other startup events, as well as announcing the winners of BETAPITCH Tirana.
Here are some of the highlights of the program and more information about the speakers.
Our first featured guests at Coworking Week are both Senior Consultants at LNE Group – a government advocacy, public funding, and strategic advisory, working with clients in the United States and across Europe. In their workshop on Saturday (6 October) Patrick Barth and Damian Borowski will be teaching you all about grant writing and how to demonstrate the credibility of your business plan in order to build a successful public funding bid. LNE Group represents different clients from for-profit business, to multinational corporations, to privately-held businesses, to startups, to NGOs. The session finished off with a Q&A session so you can get answers regardless of the type of project you're working on.
The next speaker we'll have at Coworking Week is Lubomila Jordanova – member of betahaus | Berlin and the founder of of Plan A. Plan A is a crowdfunding platform in the fight against climate change, that uses AI to predict where climate change will hit the hardest. On Sunday (7 October), she’ll be sharing the story of her startup's growth and the different types of financing (bootstrapping, angel investment funding, VC funding, etc.) that she used during the different stages of the business.
Our next guest is a professor, entrepreneur and consultant in new technologies and startups. With a long-standing interest in the internet industry, Wilhelm Lappe actively participated in the development of web 2.0 and is currently involved with startups in Europe as a consultant, professor, and mentor for entrepreneurship-related projects. In his workshop on Saturday (6 October), you will learn the first steps of a successful internationalization strategy and how to create an action plan for your business. Wilhelm will share practical tips and help you organize a "prospection mission" step-by-step.
Every business needs powerful storytelling to grow. Lenny Leiter is a Berlin-based commercial filmmaker and founder of Deskish (a visual online playground for creative people) who will teach you how to engage an international audience through storytelling. Over the last several years, Lenny has made commercial as well as non-commercial films and received a rather impressive collection of awards at international film festivals! In the meantime, he founded Deskish – an app which allows people to drag & drop any content from their computer or other websites into a blank browser window and create fun GIFs, memes, a mood board, or even an individual collection of favorite Youtube videos. His storytelling workshop will be held on Sunday (7 October) in OFICINA.
Apart from our workshops and one-on-one sessions, there are two events during Coworking Week worth nothing.
BETAPITCH is our global startup competition that takes place in partnering spaces around the world. On 5 October the local BETAPITCH is returning to Tirana in search for the best startups in town! 10 startups will get to pitch on the stage before our jury for the grand prize – a trip to Berlin on 15 November for private meetings at Investors Day and the final BETAPITCH competition with the rest of the global winners. Last year's winners were the augmented reality startup Tikapps and the smart wheelchair maker ITforEquality.
Our best known community events are also coming to Tirana for Coworking Week. We’re very excited to introduce both betabreakfast and betabeer to the Albanian audience. Friday evening will be your chance to grab a beer and do some networking with all of the participants. On Saturday, we'll be having brunch together, enjoying some presentations from local startups, and chatting about ideas and future plans.
The events at Coworking Week will be divided into two main locations: The Tulla Culture Center and OFICINA. All of the workshops, one-on-one sessions, and panel discussions will be held in OFICINA - an entrepreneurship and innovation lab that has the goal to invest in, incubate, and help develop a new-technology industry in Albania.
However, the Grand Opening, the Investor’s Talk and Friday's betabeer will be held in Tulla - a cultural center famous for its authentic and alternative events. Tulla is often referred to as one of the most extraordinary venue in Tirana, so we're excited for this one!
Ellie: Two years ago we adopted a new legal structure for Jolocom GmbH according to the purpose model of ownership, manifesting our commitment and dedication to building a self-sovereign organization. That means we can’t take VC funding or sell public shares of the company.
Volker: Jolocom is a community driven organisation – both in a tech sense but also much further beyond. We’re hugely involved in the DWeb community where we organize and attend events for the decentralized community. Every year we also help organize and attend the DWeb Camp in San Francisco, which brings together all kinds of creatives so this technology of tomorrow is built in a collaborative way.
Ellie: I know that before joining betahaus Jolocom was in the Ethereum office – a collaborative blockchain space for companies also building on the same platform and the idea was always to stay within a coworking space. When they closed and we had to move, the next closest choice in terms of company culture was betahaus.
Ellie: The people in the building and the spaces are just really cool. I personally don’t go to community events as much as i would like to but I still end up meeting a lot of people here. Mostly in the kitchen. One of my good friends is actually someone I met in betahaus.
Volker: I once saw a friend of mine presenting at betabreakfast and I didn’t know that he would be here. It was so funny seeing him on the stage.
Volker: There is this really nice place, called Green Rabbit with salads and baked potatoes where I like to go to. Sometimes I just keep it simple and go to Lidl.
Ellie: I eat a lot in west.berlin cafe which is here around the corner and I love the Matcha Lattes from Starbucks.