Aaron Turner, President and Chief Security Officer of Highside, receives the trophy for his team; Credit: EY
On Thursday evening, Highside was named the winner of Luxembourg’s Regional Final of the Startup World Cup 2020 at an award ceremony held at EY's offices in Luxembourg-Kirchberg.
As winner of the 2020 edition of the Luxembourg Regional Final, Highside will go on to represent the Grand Duchy and the Greater Region at the Startup World Cup 2020 in Silicon Valley on 22 May 2020.
"Highside" refers to a comprehensive solution developed by Highside’s global team of cybersecurity experts in 2015 to help organisations reduce their exposure to email threats, provide an end-to-end encrypted messaging platform to assure that only authorized individuals have access to data and a distributed identity and access solution to eliminate passwords. It thus reduces an organisation's risk associated with cybercrime and helps protect people, apps and data from the most sophisticated hackers.
While ten startups coming from Luxembourg and the Greater Region were unveiled following a rigorous selection process just three weeks ago, this local award is opening up a new dimension to this outstanding competition, recognised as the most prestigious startup award in the world.
The Startup World Cup, which brings together more than 50 regional competitions and conferences being held all over the world, connects startup ecosystems worldwide and encourages the most promising startups to take part in this competition, with the chance of winning a USD $1 million prize in investment. The Luxembourg Regional Final was co-organised by professional services firm EY and the House of Startups, powered by the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce.
Ahead of the quarter final, the House of Startups, with the support of EY, organised a special “Pitching Rehearsal Day” dedicated to the ten selected startups on 22 January 2020. Featuring a two-hour pitching workshop with the public speaking trainer Guy Benzeno, founder of Center Stage, and training sessions with coaches coming from the Luxembourg Startup Ecosystem, the “Pitching Rehearsal Day” aimed at preparing the short-listed startups for success in their quest for the Startup World Cup.
Nevertheless, the Regional Final pitching session yesterday evening was a crucial step for the ten nominated startups to reach the Startup World Cup 2020.
The jury scored each finalist across several criteria to decide on the winner. Each finalist of the Regional Final competition was evaluated against the following criteria: the idea, the concept (10 points); problem-solving skills (10 points); ability to meet market needs (10 points); traction ability (10 points); competitive advantage (10 points); Business Plan, sustainability (10 points); strength of the team (10 points); overall presentation (10 points).
The ten finalists of Luxembourg’s Regional Final were: ADAPTI.ME, ANOTE Music; FOOD4ALL; GOLDBAUM; HIGHSIDE (winner); HOTAILORS; MYMEDBOT; OQ Technology; UFODRIVE; ZREALITY.
The jury members composed of the following personalities from the entrepreneurial world in Luxembourg: Rajaa Mekouar-Schneider, President of LPEA, Private Equity Investor; Kamel Amroune, CEO of Farvest Group, Entrepreneur; Stefan Berend, Head of Startup Acceleration, Luxinnovation GIE; Xavier Buck, Co-Founder and Chairman of EuroDNS, Entrepreneur and Investor; Robert Glaesener, CEO of TalkWalker, Entrepreneur; Jean-Louis Schiltz, Senior Partner at Schiltz & Schiltz, Lawyer and Former Minister of Telecommunications.
All the participants and guests of the Startup World Cup’s Regional Final in Luxembourg also had the chance to listen to the world-renowned keynote speaker Bill Reichert yesterday evening. Bill Reichert started his investment career as the Managing Director at Garage Technology Ventures and has over 20 years of experience as an entrepreneur and operating executive. He also served on boards of many startups. Prior to Garage Technology Ventures, he was a co-founder and a senior executive in several venture-backed technology startups, including Trademark Software, The Learning Company, and Academic Systems.