There was something in the historic and cool venue of Kultuurikatel in Tallinn that seemed to perfectly blend the new trends with the everlasting principles of business. It was a perfect place for a yet another Latitude59 event bringing together start-up people, investors and all those interested in the scene. Among others, Fondia.
When entering the former Tallinn City Central Power Station, during those two days one actually entered e-Estonia , as the event was creatively built around that innovative concept of Estonia. The presentations by Taavi Kotka, CIO of Estonian Government, and Kaspar Korjus, head of the e-residency team, suggested that becoming an e-Estonian is not only a theoretical concept anymore, it is a reality and it is functioning. Even if just taking off, the idea and its execution has so far proven to be phenomenal in the global context. Being credibly recognised in the digital environment and allowed access to e-services, which tremendously saves one’s time in the maze of bureaucracy (hassle-free, as they say), an e-resident enjoys already today the benefits that could be a standard in the future .
As was confirmed by Aman Kumar, special advisor to e-residency, Estonia has done something extraordinary – “what government launches a programme and starts marketing it before it has figured out the laws, what government creates and delivers the first ID-card before it has figured out the mandate for the team?” It is yet to be seen what potential the e-residency really has, but it definitely should be kept in mind that Estonia is doing something unique, adding, inter alia , to a better environment for start-ups and other companies in general . Not to mention that the government itself acts like a start-up with this project.
Besides that, the conference also covered topics from financial technology to start-up ecosystems as well as privacy and cyber security. One could also hear about a super car start-up from Croatia, Rimac Automobili, a really inspiring story . However, it was not only the “main stage” where the action happened. From Silicon Valley people to Electronic Arts, IBM and Transferwise representatives, some really exciting people had gathered around to discuss ideas and develop networks on and off the stage.
One might question what lawyers are doing in such a place where start-ups mainly seek for funding, but as we at Fondia like to think – legal services are in the right place and supportive for companies from their beginning when effectively and transparently provided in a way of partnership . By lending the words of David C. Traub from Epiphany Film Fund, “it is really true that as soon as you can stop talking and you can listen and understand who you are speaking to and what their challenges and desires are, the soon you could find the way not to sell and not to close, because I don’t believe in that, it is to create a win-win . Win-win is everything.”