Judges & Speakers

STup! 2023 judges and speakers

Gain traction. Get funding. Grow.

Maciej Kraus

Partner at Movens Growth Equity

MOVENS GROWTH EQUITY has been set up by experienced investors and managers with extensive experience in profitably scaling up companies and orchestrating successful equity transactions. They are a Poland-centric, Central & Eastern Europe CEE-oriented search fund, aiming to bridge the regional equity gap faced by SMEs looking to raise equity in the range of EUR 2-6m. They offer unique investment opportunities to equity investors looking for exposure to the SME asset class in the CEE. They support entrepreneurs and management aiming to build great mid-market companies.
Movens Capital,

Jonathan Steinberg

Founding partner at Mountside Ventures

Mountside Ventures optimize the fundraising process for European startups & investors. Firstly, they partner with the most ambitious entrepreneurs raising their Next Round of funding, minimizing the disruption to their business. We do this by helping them get investor-ready, introducing them to relevant investors excluding investors based in the US), and supporting them in closing their round with terms that are right for them. Secondly, they help forward-looking Limited Partners identify the most promising Venture Fund Managers to promote the flow of venture capital into the European ecosystem.
Mountside Ventures, UK

Alena Hloba

Community Partnerships at Wolves Summit

Wolves Summit connects angel investors, VC funds, tech talents, and corporations with the most promising startups in the CEE region to help ambitious founders scale and foster international economic growth. In the last five years, they have fine-tuned their Wolves Match tool to facilitate strategic connections and strengthen ties between countries, expand startup ecosystems and grow opportunities for entrepreneurs. Every edition attracts more than 2500 participants from 80 countries providing 100+ hours of immersive educational content, keynotes, and startup pitches.
Wolves Summit,

Gergely Balázs

Investment Manager at Vespucci Partners

Vespucci Partners aims to find and support those Central European startup teams that have a truly disruptive product and are capable of achieving success in the global market. They believe that this market can produce unicorns as well, and they want to be the investors who help grow these potential startups to get closer to that stage. They think that success depends on a lot of other aspects next to financial support. So they give to startups more than just money, they provide smart capital with portfolio management experts from all areas, guidance, and contacts for a successful international expansion.
Vespucci Partners,

Tessa McIver

Head of Alumni Development at MIT Enterprise Forum CEE

MIT Enterprise Forum CEE is a CEE- based, equity-free startup acceleration program affiliated with the worldwide recognized Massachusetts Institute of Technology that provides financial, legal, and consultancy support to startup founders from the CEE region. The aim of the program is to support the development of the most innovative startups from Central and Eastern Europe by combining their potential with the knowledge and resources of leading global and regional enterprises and the experience of Polish and international mentors, helping startups to scale up on international markets, primarily in the United States.
MIT Enterprise Forum CEE,

Stevica Kuharski

Principal at Fil Rouge Capital

Fil Rouge Capital is a Venture Capital investment fund whose primary goal is to invest in entrepreneurs, start-up, and scale-up companies. We are sector agnostic and we run an Acceleration program 2 times a year. Our mission is to build an entrepreneurial ecosystem and make the Croatian startup scene the next leader in the CEE region and beyond because we believe it’s cool to disrupt things for the better!
Fil Rouge Capital - Venture Capital & Private Equity,

Andreas Spechtler

Founder and CEO at Silicon Castles

Silicon Castles is a Strategic Business Accelerator for technology intellectual property (IP) licensing businesses with a focus on European Diamonds (technology startups with scalable technology and outstanding intellectual property). Once a year Silicon Castles organizes the Startup Executive Academy (SEA), which is an international and exclusive Go-to-market program for early-stage startup founders and executives to accelerate their business and inspire growth.
Silicon Castles,

Iva Rakocevic

Principal at Kavedon Kapital

Kavedon Kapital is a Venture Capital firm whose entire ethos and philosophy are designed around Circular Economics. Everyone in Kavedon Kapital, Investors, Founders, and Management Team alike, has the responsibility to build a venture model for tomorrow, today. Kavedon is an outcome-focused fund, with mutually aligned interests in the short and long term, which means everybody gains from the generated prosperity without sacrificing their unique interest.
Kavedon Kapital,

Ivana Čuljak

COO at Invento Capital Partners, EIT Urban Mobility Croatia

INVENTO Capital Partners is specialized in fostering innovation in Balkan Region by working on the business development of start-ups /SMS and building connections with industry, researchers and entrepreneurs, businesses, and markets across Europe. EIT Urban Mobility is an initiative of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT). Since January 2019 they have been working to encourage positive changes in the way people move around cities to make them more liveable places. We aim to become the largest European initiative in transforming urban mobility. Co-funding of up to € 400 million (2020-2026) from the EIT, a body of the European Union, will help make this happen.
Invento Capital Partners,
EIT Urban Mobility,

Maja Brkljačić

Vice president for education & EU funds at CRO STARTUP

CRO STARTUP is Croatian Startup Ecosystem Association. CRO STARTUP is created to support the interests of startup founders and employees in Croatia, to empower them by providing a wide range of resources, tools and networks, and finally, to promote the startup scene on a European and international level. Association want to connect and coordinate all the stakeholders, as well as all the existing local, regional, and sector-based initiatives. Also, organize events that will allow networking and exchange of experiences, as well as showcase Croatian startups to the general public.

Veronica Kirin

Board Member at Founder Institute Berlin

Founder Institute is the world’s first early-stage accelerator. Their program was built with early-stage Founders in mind specifically, meaning you can join with just an idea or MVP. They provide invaluable knowledge from top Mentors and deliver decades of startup and entrepreneurship experience in an intensive 14-week offline format. And now since Covid19 hit, in an online format. To give entrepreneurs a critical support network to help them across the entire lifecycle of their business, Founder Institute has developed a groundbreaking Equity Collective where everyone shares equity in the companies formed from each program cohort.
Founder Institute Berlin,