Slovenian Startup of the Year Award
We seek, feature and reward ambassadors of Slovenian startup entrepreneurship. Those startup companies or teams that with their achievements, actions, reputation and development potential, represent a new generation of Slovenian innovative entrepreneurs.
Slovenian Startup Community Project
The Slovenian Start-up of the Year Award is a project of active stakeholders of the Slovenian startup ecosystem. Their task is to participate in the nomination of candidates for the award and the domestic and international promotion of the finalists and the recipient of the title. The main organizer of the project is Start:up Slovenia, and the co-organizers are traditionally the Slovene Enterprise Fund and the Ministry of Economic Development and Technology.
The Slovenian Startup of the Year Award can be won by a Slovenian innovative startup company with the potential to grow in global markets. With the award, key stakeholders of the Slovenian startup ecosystem want to highlight and reward companies and their teams that, with their perseverance, globally recognized achievements and bold vision of development set an example in domestic and global environments.
The recipient of the Slovenian Startup of the Year award also becomes an ambassador of the Slovenian startup community. The organizers of the award offer active PR and other support to the recipients of the title. In addition to their success in the media and at events at home and abroad, a crystal statue will remind the winners that they also promote the Slovenian startup community.
Organizers announce a public call for proposals of startup companies that meet the award criteria. Each active member of the startup ecosystem can nominate only one startup company. They justify their written nomination by answering predefined short questions related to the nominated startup company and the company that is nominating. The nominated company must be aware of and agree with the nomination. A company that has already received the Slovenian Startup of the Year award cannot be nominated. The ecosystem nominees are also joined by the three top-rated start-up companies in the Start:up Slovenia pre-selection.
All nominations received are handled by a nomination committee composed of a representative of Start:up Slovenia and other active members of the Slovenian startup ecosystem who carry out or participate in the implementation of private and public programmes to support startup companies. Each nomination committee member casts their vote and lists five nominees from the common list, without being able to vote for their nominee.
Five top-rated startups qualify for the finals, while the current winner, Hurra Studios (Mali junaki) travels in November to the Slush Festival.
Which companies can be nominated?
- Company was established in the Republic of Slovenia.
- Its core team is operating in Slovenia.
- Company is not older than 3 years at the nomination deadline.
- At the date of nomination, the company had not yet received a major investment A round (the indicative amount is up to half a million euros in cumulative investments or larger).
- Nominated company is informed and agrees with the nomination. Anyone submitting a nomination also substantiates it (as follows in the paragraph below).
Substantiation Of Nominations
Anyone who nominates a candidate for the Slovenian Startup of the Year Award gives their justification by answering the following questions:
- With what achievements, contributions or vision does the nominated company set an example in the domestic and foreign startup environment?
- How is the company involved in the Slovenian economy (employment, partnerships, participation in support programmes, etc.)?
How The Winner Is Chosen From 5 Finalists?
The members of the evaluation committee for the award are eminent Slovenian and foreign entrepreneurs and investors, who are connected with the operation and development of the Slovenian startup ecosystem. The committee is tasked with selecting the winner from the five startup finalists.
The members of the jury are renowned Slovenian and foreign entrepreneurs.
The evaluation committee for the Slovenian Startup of the Year award evaluates the finalists according to four criteria:
- Product: The company has successfully validated the value of its products in the market, which solves significant pain or the problem of the target group of users. Successful validation of value is reflected in the number of first-time users and their growth, while most important are certainly paying customers.
- Investors: With its product and business model, the company was able to gain approval from domestic and foreign investors, who added additional capital and other resources to the company. Experienced and internationally renowned investors are particularly important.
- Team: The company is led by a competent, dedicated and well-organized team with a clear vision and complementary knowledge and experience (technical, organizational and sales skills) that will enable them to continue their successful business development.
- Potential for successful business and growth (with a comprehensive business model): The overall business model is innovative, based on logical and market-based assumptions that do not show any visible weaknesses/ deficiencies. The company has at least some uncatchable advantage. The company has the potential to develop a good business in a promising, large enough and growing market. The results will be or are already reflected in high revenues, number of employees, profitability and even the likelihood of industry or market niche disruption.
The award committee evaluates the candidates according to these criteria, drawing information from the application form and other publicly available information.
Winner Announcement and Award
The members of the evaluation committee meet each year before the PODIM Conference and select the winner, who is solemnly announced at the evening gala event as part of the first PODIM Conference day.
Slovenian Startup of the Year 2019, Hurra Studios, received the "all-inclusive" package for visiting the Slush Festival in Helsinki in November 2019.
Finalists of 2019
Finalists of 2018
Finalists of 2017
- VIAR; Slovenski start-up leta 2017
- 45HC d.o.o.
- AgiliCity d.o.o.
- Potenza Innova d.o.o.
- OptiBar d.o.o.
- Fastcast d.o.o.
Finalists of 2016
- Nizkocenovci d.o.o.; Slovenski start-up leta 2016
- Blub Blub d.o.o.
- Feelif d.o.o.
- Ulla Labs d.o.o.
- 45HC.com d.o.o.
- VinTech d.o.o.
- ADORA MED d.o.o.
- Gotoky d.o.o.
- Doctrina d.o.o.
- Chipolo d.o.o.
Finalists of 2015
- Tibopo d.o.o.; Slovenski start-up leta 2015
- InoVine d.o.o.
- Koinhab d.o.o.
- Kraken d.o.o.
- SBT d.o.o.
Finalists of 2014
- OOG d.o.o.; Slovenski start-up leta 2014
- Enoljse d.o.o.
- Sunesis d.o.o.
- Adora-med d.o.o.
- Geatronik d.o.o.
Finalists of 2013
- Koofr d.o.o.; Slovenski start-up leta 2013
- SmartPA d.o.o.
- Eforma d.o.o.
- MycoMedica d.o.o.
- HomeOgarden d.o.o.
Finalists of 2012
- Vorteks d.o.o.; Slovenski start-up leta 2012
- Replikateh d.o.o.
- WEBER MARINE d.o.o.
- Animacel d.o.o.
- JAFRAL d.o.o.
Finalists of 2011
- DiaGenomi d.o.o.; Slovenski start-up leta 2011
- R3 d.o.o.
- Modro oko d.o.o.
- MESI d.o.o.
- Intelius d.o.o.
Finalists of 2010
Envit d.o.o.; Slovenski start-up leta 2010
- Molekula d.o.o.
- BioSistemika d.o.o.
- Red Orbit
- DigiEd d.o.o.
Finalists of 2009
G-1 d.o.o.; Slovenski start-up leta 2009
Konstelacija H2 d.o.o.
- Lumian d.o.o.
- OBS d.o.o.
- OptiLab d.o.o.
- Uniki d.o.o.
- Versor d.o.o.
Finalists of 2008
Acies Bio d.o.o.; Slovenski start-up leta 2008
Strelovod, programska oprema, David Krmpotić s.p.
- Gene planet d.o.o.
- Konhiša Marin Ribač s.p.
- Naturel, Majda Bagar-Povše s.p.
- Neptun digital d.o.o.
- Visionect d.o.o.
- Zavod Artesia