Tech Startup Day celebrates its fifth anniversary in 2017. Last year, over 1.100 people enjoyed the workshops and the networking. This year we’re going international, showcasing a European start-up delegation for the first time.  

Tech Startup Day 2017 is Belgium’s leading startup conference. It gathers all the key players in the Belgian startup ecosystem in the heart of Brussels, where attendees can mingle with people ranging from tech entrepreneurs to corporate investors in an informal and fun manner.

“There’s no way around Tech Startup Day when you’ve set up a digital company”, agrees investor Frank Maene. “Not only do you meet your colleagues and your competitors, most business angels and venture capitalists attend the event too. For startups, it’s both an opportunity and an advantage to be able to network with investors in the enjoyable setting that’s TSD. As for me, I like the fact that I get to know people and companies in a different way. I invite everyone to join and feel the vibe!”

In 2013, during its first edition, the conference gathered 400 startup-minded people. Last year, over 1.100 people enjoyed the workshops, the keynotes and the networking opportunities. Typically, the TSD audience consists of 19% early stage startups, 24% scale-ups, 18% enablers, 23% businesses looking for innovative solutions, and 9% of investors.

This year provides 2 parallel sessions with 6 simultaneous tracks, ranging from idea stage to exit scenarios. Over 40 top speakers provide tips, best practices, do’s and don’ts, and share their lessons learned. Last year, 750 meetings were scheduled with Conversation Starter. The same app will be used again this year. Additionally, the sets up a massive startup & community village to put the spotlight on the entrepreneurs even more.

"Tech Startup Day is the yearly celebration of the Belgian tech ecosystem, and of all the hard-working people on stage and behind the scenes”, explains Yonca Braeckman, managing director at Watt Factory, a new smart city accelerator in Ghent. 

Since Yonca is only starting up the new hub, her main goal in Brussels is to get the word out and get some extra last minute applications. “TSD is the Belgian startup event of the year, it's the place to meet with old friends and make some new ones. I can highly recommend it.”

International delegation

For the first time, we’re also hosting a European start-up delegation in the Egg. No less than eight Hungarian startups will show what they have to offer during the event, stressing the importance of Brussels and Belgium for their international expansion.

“The Hungarian delegation wants to get to know the Belgian market”, adds Szonja Bender, head of the economic and commercial section of the Hungarian Embassy to Belgium, “because your country is an ideal testing ground for companies that want to go abroad.”

“The goal is also to look for cooperation opportunities between Belgian and Hungarian startups, and the eight startups that attend do hope to find interesting contacts so that they can enlarge their network in Belgium. The day after TSD, our delegation travels to Antwerp for a pitch workshop for Belgian investors. As you can see we take a great interest in the Belgian ecosystem.”

Facilitating the access to the Belgian market for foreign startups, will be one of the focus points for Tech Startup Day in the years to come. We want to celebrate the tenth birthday of our conference being a truly international event, that is well known all over Europe.

And the winner is…

We are equally happy to announce the second edition of the Tech Startup Day Awards. Our professional jury (Simon Alexandre, Béatrice De Mahieu, Omar Mohout, Frank Maene and Wim De Preter) proposed a shortlist in four categories, and it’s up to you, the Belgian startup community, to decide about the winners!

"We organize these awards to celebrate our Belgian tech talent", explains Karen Boers, Managing Director of "We Belgians are often very modest about our achievements. Instead, we should be proud of our 'homegrown talent."

Of course, there are some very interesting prizes to win. Among them are a free seat on one of our top notch international GoGlobal missions, flex desks for one year at Co.Station (Brussels or Ghent), coaching sessions by the jury, a two year expert hosting package courtesy of Combell, a 6 months’ seat at the Belcham offices in New York (Pulse Foundation), pitch opportunities at Data News’ MatchIT-event, an EYnovation package worth 2.500 euro, and many more.

By Kristien Mertens

Registration for the most wanted event in 2017, Tech Startup Day, is in full swing! Are you in?