Ilustratīvs attēls

Tomorrow, on May 16, the Baltic's most ambitious science and technology conference "Deep Tech Atelier 2024" begins, where the most convincing startup ideas will receive investor fund consultations, investment opportunities, and valuable prizes. Therefore, dozens of contestants from Latvia have carefully prepared for two days of presentation sessions and a virtual Expo, while the extensive program of the event ensures that each participant will find topics of interest.

At the beginning of the year, the Startin.LV database of startups in Latvia registered 449 startups, according to data from the Latvian Startup Association. In 2022, the startup community in Latvia employed 3,677 workers, with an average monthly salary of around 2500 euros. In terms of taxes, startups in Latvia collectively paid 57.2 million euros in 2022. Most Latvian startups operate in areas such as FinTech, HealthTech, artificial intelligence, MedTech, and mobility.

To promote the development of other industries as well, this year's conference organized by the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (LIAA) in Riga will focus on synergies between business and science, bio and space technologies, and other crucial issues for innovators. Highlighting business opportunities and commercialization issues, the conference will also feature a day dedicated to the European Space Agency (ESA).

"The future of the Latvian economy lies in high value-added and knowledge-intensive sectors. Therefore, research and the study of STEM subjects in schools and universities, access to capital, support for startups, and reducing administrative burdens are of great importance. We have the knowledge, skills, and resources for Latvia to grow and for the next technology and innovation leaders to develop their businesses here, attracting private foreign investments. Innovation is the engine of the economy, and we have the bold ideas to turn them into reality," says Evika Silina, Prime Minister of the Republic of Latvia.

"Experts from various deep tech industries have gathered at this significant conference in the Baltics dedicated to these fields. We are pleased to welcome to Riga such knowledgeable and active international community, more than 1000 specialists from various fields, who are particularly interested in the conference's most relevant topics - biotechnology and space technologies, funding, and the latest scientific discoveries. We are confident that the discussions, new contacts, synergy between startups and potential investors, developed in two days, will be a new step in development not only in Latvia but also in the wider region. Joint investment will certainly increase the capacity for innovation, create an innovation system, and inevitably lead to the much-needed technological progress in the economy, especially in RIS3* areas," says Laura Strovalde, LIAA Deputy Director for Investment and Energy.

Space is a new source of information for humanity

Several industry representatives are invited to the conference, highly valued both in their home countries and internationally in their professional work. For example, Bianka Cefalo, who in 2013 was the youngest Italian analyst working on the NASA/JPL Insight Mars mission. Currently, Bianca Cefalo lives in London - she is the CEO and co-founder of Space DOTS Inc., a pioneer in progressive material research and development in space, testing, quality control, developing basic elements necessary for sustainable circular economy.

Her belief is that space technology can create our future, and Bianca Cefalo reminds us: "Every day, we are all dependent on products of space technology, especially on satellites and space exploration findings. Governments and billions of people use space technology every day without even knowing it. From social media to Google Maps, telemedicine, video conferencing systems, bank transfers, water and oil pipeline control. Everything is based on satellite communications and obtained data! Thanks to telecommunication satellites, people living in rural areas can receive equivalent internet services to those living in cities, reducing the regional digital divide and education gap. Space technology is the foundation of modern life. Space is a new source of information for humanity. It is a source of inspiration, adaptation, and evolution. With space technology, we are shaping our future. And with that, we are moving to the next level of human evolution."

The conference will also feature Rob Brinded (Bristol, UK) - specializing in consulting professional athletes, entrepreneurs, and leaders, has been an advisor to Barcelona FC athletes, the English National Ballet School, and other organizations.

The event will also feature speakers such as Veronika Puisa, a member of the European Space Agency's Medical Board, Mark Schubert, Deputy Director of Research and Development at Sherwin-Williams, Chris O'Connor, Partner at the NATO Innovation Fund, Tessy Antony De Nassau, social entrepreneur, philanthropist, Joe Cotti, Business Development Manager at Airbus Defence and Space-Intelligence, Michalis Stangos, entrepreneur, investor, ecosystem builder, and many others.

Overall, conference speakers will represent countries such as the UK, Switzerland, Germany, Luxembourg, France, Finland, Japan, the USA, and many others.

The "Deep Tech Atelier 2024" conference program will feature three stages:

  • Deep Tech stage, dedicated to funding and industry policy issues, support tools, best practices, as well as startup pitch and reverse pitch for investors;
  • BioCosmic stage, which will host the European Space Agency (ESA) Day on May 16, highlighting content dedicated to space technologies, and on May 17, focusing on progressive biotechnologies;
  • Growth stage, scheduled for May 16, will feature success stories of the Norwegian Financial Instrument and the support opportunities it provides, while on May 17, Labs of Latvia will address science communication issues. Various accompanying events or side-events will also take place.

"Deep Tech Atelier 2024" will take place on May 16-17 this year, at the conference center "Fantadroms", Gustava Zemgala Street 76, Riga (working language English).

The event funding is provided by the ERDF projects "Development of Innovative Entrepreneurship of SMEs" and "Support for Improving Technology Transfer System", the Norwegian Financial Instrument 2014-2021 program "Business Development, Innovation and SMEs", and state budget program 28.00.00 Funds for the Implementation of Foreign Economic Policy of the State Image. The conference content is developed in cooperation with the Commercialization Reactor platform, the Science and Innovation Center of Riga Technical University, the Latvian Space Industry Association, and the Biocatalyst Foundation.

More information and free registration is available at