StartupSpain IV. This is how it all started

In the summer of 2010 we had just won our first World Cup. It was then, almost two years ago when Chile surprised us all with the announcement of Startup Chile. It was a real audacity but it was full of good vibes and common sense. It became the talk of the events of that time, and soon after we learned of the success of its first call.

Some entrepreneurs such as Xurde asked us how we saw that southern madness as they were planning to go. How were we going to see it? Well, with healthy envy; I imagined myself walking in the fall of 2020 in the Centro-Providencia neighborhood of Santiago de Chile in the middle of a first division startup ecosystem.

The Chilean program was an isolated initiative until early spring 2011 when Startup America and Startup Britain made it clear to us that they were serious about it. In Spain, the first three institutions that became interested in the subject were/are: AJE-Madrid, Tetuan Valley and EOI. In the same way that in the Chilean case we cannot talk about a country or an organization, we have to talk about a person - a person. Nico Shea -In this case, we are talking about three: Álvaro Cuesta, Luis Rivera and yours truly.

The Madrid Young Entrepreneurs Association was/is led by Álvaro Cuesta and had undergone a profound modernization in the previous months. Álvaro proposed a coordination structure for the young Spanish startup ecosystem. Luis Rivera had already created a small startup ecosystem in the image and likeness of Y Combinator, but in the Madrid neighborhood of Tetuán - Tetuan Valley; Luis was betting on private initiative to pull this cart and defended the Chilean model of returning to the state what was received in the form of services to the Community.

Meanwhile, at EOI we had started working on the School's Entrepreneurship Plan after the SIMO-Open Green in October 2010. This plan integrated the main institutions and placed the School as a bridge between public and private initiatives. Its construction process allowed me to listen to representative voices of the Ecosystem. I remember the phrase of Javier Martín in December 2010: will only work if it exits from the bottom upthe one of Ricardo Galli: administrations have to buy things from startupsor that of Juan Mateu in this same line: don't give me subsidies, buy me things. Also, those aimed at administrative and fiscal simplification through the introduction of François Derbaix: deregulate and eliminate subsidiesor his wife's common sense vision, Marta Estevewho saw a building in the city center accessible to entrepreneurs.

In the turbulent summer of 2011 MadridEmprende took a step forward with the launch of Madrid International Lab. Thus, the institution led by Iñaki Ortega went from being the largest network of incubators nationwide to positioning itself very seriously as that infrastructure for startups that Marta Esteve had told me about half a year earlier.

After these pioneers would come Wayra Spain, the Repsol Foundation Entrepreneurs Fund, the Start Up Spain events of ESADE - Rafael del Pino Foundation or the Spain Startup & Investor Summit of IE, Infoempleo and FCP; but we will talk about these on another occasion.




3 responses to "StartupSpain IV. This is how it all started”

  1. When I said "don't give me subsidies, buy me things" of course I was referring to giving opportunities to companies that really do competitive things, even ahead of much larger and recognized companies, but which "because they are small" in this country are directly excluded from technology purchasing processes.

  2. The figure of the public purchase of technology exists but is not used, the public manager earns the same if he buys state-of-the-art technology from a small company at a better price than if he acquires low and more expensive technology from a large company; but in the second case he risks less.
    Of course, that lowers domestic demand.

  3. Valuable all the information on this website.
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