Warsaw, Poland — CEED, with the support of the Regional Competitiveness Initiative, held its 6th annual regional conference on May 24 and 25. More than 130 firms from Eastern Europe and Eurasia attended the event titled “Growing up & Out” which focused on internationalization and scaling one’s business.

Although Central and Eastern Europe is a diverse region with many comparative advantages and opportunities, entrepreneurs are daunted by market contraction and the challenge of finding new business in the region and beyond. As one of the few growing markets in Europe, Poland was chosen as the venue for the conference that helped CEED members access new business opportunities.

As with all CEED events, the conference aimed to connect entrepreneurs, acknowledge business challenges and provide real case studies of firms that successfully internationalized and scaled their business in the region.


Key Highlights:

• Keynote speaker Jerry Colonna — an early investor in Twitter, Lycos, Gamesville and Geocities. Named one of the 100 Most Influential People of the New Economy by Upside Magazine, Jerry talked about the crucible of leadership and the preparation required of entrepreneurs on both a personal and professional level to venture into new markets and build organizations to scale. (For more information, read Jerry’s blog at www.themonsterinyourhead.com).

• Insight and Inspiration from Johan Gorecki — an entrepreneur who worked with the founding team of Skype which was sold to eBay for USD 4.1 billion in 2005. Johan highlighted lessons that can be learned from failure and the need for perseverance to ultimately get it right.

• Direct access to active investors including Lewiatan Business Angels, Small Enterprise Assistance Funds (equity & debt), a visit to the NewConnect segment of the Warsaw Stock Exchange, and Grow VC, a globally leading crowd-­funding service.