Techsylvania 2018 – coming in June, bolder than ever

Techsylvania is the leading technology event in Eastern Europe, built to revitalize the local tech community through high-quality information delivered by entrepreneurs, experts from top tech companies, leaders and investors (46 in 2017). In 4 years it developed into a powerful platform in the tech scene of Eastern Europe.
The event features a connected devices hackathon where developers build creative projects, as well as a startup competition that featured early stage companies from 9 countries.

In 2018 Techsylvania will take place on the 9-12th of June at the Students’ Culture Hall in Cluj-Napoca, Romania.

Techsylvania started in 2014 with 380 attendees and grew to more than 1500 attendees in 2017 (22% growth from 2016). The conference attracted speakers such as: Tim Draper (Founder of DFJ), Steffi Czerny (Managing Director at DLD Media), Peter Halacsy (CTO & Co-Founder at Prezi), Mark Shuttleworth (Founder of Ubuntu & Canonical), Andreas Ehn (First employee & CTO at Spotify), Peter Yared (Former CTO CBS Interactive), Gentry Underwood (Co-Founder of Mailbox), Johannes Reck (CEO GetYourGuide), Marcus Segal (Senior VP of Operations at Zynga), David Bettner (Creator of Words With Friends).

·      Tim Draper about Techsylvania: “Romania has some real contenders in the startup world, and Techsylvania brought the new ones to light.”
·      Mark Shuttleworth about Techsylvania: “Vibrant crowd, great questions, lots of ideas and a lovely setting made Techsylvania a thoroughly enjoyable event.”
·      Johannes Reck about Techsylvania: “The content was great and what we liked the most was that it is a true engineering conference”

“At Techsylvania we have identified a strong need to focus on the startup ecosystem, in-depth and hands-on. That’s how Startup Avalanche was born back in 2016, an ice-breaking competition for startups that speak business. We have created this additional event together with Risky Business in order to support early stage and give them a challenging environment to evolve in.”

Startup Avalanche is a 2-days pitching competition which takes place during the Techsylvania conference. The Grand Prize will be awarded to the most promising startup. This consists of a tailored trip to the Silicon Valley.

Ready to join now? Early birds tickets on sale HERE!

Leader Talks: Veneta Andonova

In October Leader Talks gave us the chance to meet Mrs Veneta Andonova – a professor teaching at AUBG and a mentor at Eleven.

We discussed what is the entrepreneurial mindset and what kind of skill set an entrepreneur needs to have while she gave us valuable advice in what direction we should aim to develop ourselves as entrepreneurs to become really good ones. Veneta told us stories about what the entrepreneurship eco system looks like in Latin America and gave an a great example of one interesting man in particular and what makes him so unique – how he manages to achieve his goals in a place and time when many, many others cannot. His farm – Hacienda Gavilanes – working in a new innovative way, shows us how things can happen when there is a burning desire, a strong will and many efforts put in no matter the time and the circumstances.
“The entrepreneurial mindset is something really complex, it is being able to look at things from a totally different perspective, without letting the tragedy of the situation overcomes you”, says Mrs. Andonova.

We were also lucky to receive a few practical advice, based on Veneta`s long-lasting research – it is important to learn how to give constructive feedback as well as learn how to listen and understand the one given to us; she also told us that we should stop looking insanely for role models and advisors, as this makes us weaker and we start questioning our own abilities, this gets us away from testing on practice our ideas. What we should be looking for is the practical mechanisms, the tools these people use to make things happen and not warship what they have accomplished but look at ourselves and believe in what we can accomplish and learn how. She finished off the discussion with one challenge to all of us – to sit down and think about all the things we have and accept as given, things we think cannot change and write them down. After a day or two – get back to this list and go one by one thinking how to change them!


Leader Talks: Julieta Serafimova


This September was the third anniversary of Leader Talks and on 29.09 its fourth year began meeting us with Julieta Serafimova – General manager of Grand Hotel Sofia and Business development manager of Sofia Hotels management – a management company of the three NIKMI owned hotels Grand Hotel Sofia, Sofia suite hotel and Central Park Sofia. Together with her the Leader Talks audience talked about the leadership in the management and she personally reiterated the principle: Hire for attitude, train for skills. She also highlighted as a desirable trait of the leader the quick analysis of the situation and decision making, as well as giving freedom to one’s imagination for the business development to certain extend allowed by the glass ceiling that we all meet.

Mrs. Serafimova shared the advice that she would give to her 25-year old self and she underlined that she should have trusted herself more; she should have risked more without paying attention to the negatively thinking people; she should have valued and defended her efforts more and she should have celebrated her success more.

Last but not least, as a longtime professional in the hotel business with Bulgarian and international experience, Mrs. Serafimova put an accent on how important it is to sell the personal image of the leader: from the attire and manners through the social media profile.


ABLE took part in the youth academy of NYF

ABLE was represented by two of its members in the summer youth academy of the National Youth Forum in Atia from 7th till 11th September, which is taking place for a third time this year. Among the discussed topics were the democracy and its values, lobbying, youth leadership and youth participation in different organizations as a drive for a change. There were two simulation games of elections and debates. After the clean and democratic elections happened, to which one of the ABLE members was an auditor, the other member managed to enter the parliament in second place with a difference from the first place of only one vote.