Kudos to the organizers and especially to Mr. Burak Buyukdemir – who is heading the Etohum cause in Turkey.
Sensika was there and this is what we’ve learned:
1. If you have plans to expand towards the Middle East – you have to pass through Turkey – its the sort of a gate to the tech markets of the Orient.
2. The length of a pitch gets lower and lower – the startups had to make their point within 2.5 minutes. So, no difference between an elevator pitch and an on-stage presentation anymore. This is down to the proliferation of startups in the recent years, i guess.
3. The Middle East Tech focus is not on data analysis yet – its still on all kinds of apps, web and mobile, asking for man-hours and eyeballs. As a reference – Techcrunch disrupt New York in 2010 had somewhat similar focus. This is understandable – people move with their own speed in technology adoption and that’s the absolutely right thing to do.
4. These events become more and more about networking that might help business at some later stage. Ditch all hope of making actual business on startup gatherings. People look at the limits of their attention capability all the time. With the right expectations and strategy, an event like Startup Turkey could be beneficial for starting instrumental relationships.
5. Less than 10% of my follow-up mails were actually replied. Luckily for me, the investors replied. But all other guys, potential partners etc – nix. Wonder why…
6. To get a data sim in Turkey you need to register your device…the whole process takes quite a while. Selling pre-registered smartphones could be a big business in TR…if it is legal 🙂