Many Ukrainians have contributed significantly to famous innovations in the global startup scene. Jan Koum, Whats app co-founder, Max Levchin PayPal co-founder, as well as Grammarly and People.AI co-founders were all raised in Ukrainian families.
Before Russia invaded Ukraine, the country had a thriving StartUp ecosystem. Kyiv had become a European hub according to Startup Ecosystem Rankings 2020 by StartupBlink, that ranks the startup ecosystems of 100 countries and 1000 cities. Kyiv is homebase to over 1000 successful startups and product companies according to the official website of Ukraine.
Due to the war, entrepreneurs in Ukraine are struggling, trying to save their employees or forced to flee from the country. However some of the entrepreneurs see the war as an opportunity to start helping defense forces and rebuilding the society as described in Forbes in March 2022. For example startup teams had invented drones used by farmers to check the fields. After the war broke, entrepreneurs quickly refocused their work and started to provide drones for the Ukrainian military forces.
We stand with Ukrainian entrepreneurs and future leaders
Organisations and individuals in the western world have played a major role in helping Ukrainians with first aid, ammunition, food and medicine during the war.
I don’t need a ride, I need ammunition.– President Zelenskyi
We also have an obligation to contribute significantly in rebuilding Ukraine during the upcoming decades. It is important to maintain innovative mindsets in Ukraine even during this tragic war. Thus, entrepreneurs and the startup community in Finland and Estonia are joining forces to support Ukrainian entrepreneurs and empower the future leaders of Ukraine.
In May- June 2022 an online mentoring program and pitching competition, Empowering Future Entrepreneurial Ukraine, will be arranged for progressive StartUp entrepreneurs from Ukraine. Tough war times have created innovators whose growth mindset can be cultivated later for global success stories for the benefit of all. Compulsory is the biggest motivator, goes a saying.
Empowering entrepreneurial Ukraine is an antidote to tyranny
Ukrainians are fighting on behalf of the freedom of western Europe and for our democratic values. We cannot afford to lose talented young generations in Ukraine and their innovations due to the struggles of the war.
Ukraine’s democratic development, western connections and anti-corruption work have been often mentioned as a threat for Russia in addition to NATO. Entrepreneurial Ukraine is the future super ammunition of Ukraine. Empowering talented youth of Ukraine is the most dangerous weapon against the invader.
Independence, can-do attitude, western connections, freedom, commercialization, investments, and new venture creation are toxic poison against tyranny. Together they form a very powerful revenge.
The best way to predict the future is to create it.– Abraham Lincoln
Applications by May 21, 2022 for the Ukrainian Future incubator and startup mentoring program and pitching competition.