That was the Summer School 2020 I.E.C.T. – Summer School on Entrepreneurship

I.E.C.T. – Summer School on Entrepreneurship 2020

24 international start-ups and numerous mentors and experts were part of the I.E.C.T. – Summer School on Entrepreneurship, which was offered last year for the first time as a completely digitalised programme.

Read more about the start-ups, the programme and the public events of the I.E.C.T. – Summer School here.

Start-ups from Austria, Great Britain, India, Germany, Indonesia, the Czech Republic, Italy, the United States of America and Croatia came together in mid-August to learn together how to turn their ideas into reality. Due to Covid-19 and the accompanying measures and entry restrictions, the I.E.C.T. – Summer School on Entrepreneurship was offered last year for the first time in completely digitalised form. While the programme was held in the Werkstätte Wattens between 2015 and 2019, all participating start-ups, the I.E.C.T. team and the international mentors met in front of their home screens to work together on the projects.

The I.E.C.T. – Network feels like being part of a community.

OTELLO RISCIONI, Summer School participant und founder of MaterialX LTD

Summer School participant Anna Pölzl and Klara Brandstätter in a mentoring.

The I.E.C.T. – Network served as the platform for the programme. It guarantees the personal connection to relevant actors of the I.E.C.T. ecosystem and the transfer of recognised know-how. The I.E.C.T. – Network thus combines the communication of relevant contents like an educational platform does with the possibility of networking.

I.E.C.T. has opened a new bridge to connecting technology and business for an early start-up.

NUHA ANFARESI, Summer School participant and founder of AiKite

The prospective entrepreneurs come from the most diverse fields, such as life science and health care, artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality, semiconductors, technical chemistry, advanced materials or 3D printing. Despite long mentoring sessions in front of the screen, the researchers were characterised by a high level of motivation and commitment. Workshops with experts from the deep-tech field, mentoring in small groups and a peer-to-peer learning environment combined with 1-to-1 sessions with business and legal advice from experts are just some of the features that make up the programme and enable the highest possible learning curve.

“So many great people, I am grateful for the opportunity to be here.”

MARKUS WALS, Founder of Wals Professional e.U.

The I.E.C.T. team at Werkstätte Wattens

External guests were also able to get to know the participating start-ups at selected events for the first time last year.

At the opening event Tirol meets Cambridge Klara Brandstätter – Managing Director at I.E.C.T. – presented the programme and introduced the functioning of the I.E.C.T. – Network. The start-ups could introduce themselves and their idea or project during a 1-minute pitch. Afterwards Hermann Stockinger – former Summer School participant – gave a keynote speech and talked about his participation in the programme as well as his project Easelink – Matrix Charging and could thus show the current participants what they could expect in the future. Artificial intelligence and its future in terms of decision making was discussed in a high-profile panel during the State of AI event.

Roeland Nusselder (PlumerAI), Claire Bennett (FiveAI) – both gave a keynote speech before –, Nancy Nemes, Charly Kleissner and Hermann Hauser talked about this topic. The evening was moderated by Jakob Steinschaden (TrendingTopics).

At the Idea meets Business, interested entrepreneurs had the opportunity to get to know the 24 start-ups from the deep-tech world. Established companies and experts met the international start-ups. The start-ups introduced themselves to the audience with short pitches and were then able to answer any questions in break-out sessions. This format highlights and supports the cooperation between established companies and start-ups. Dominik Jenewein (Junge Wirtschaft Tirol)also referred to this importance in his keynote speech.

The Summer School is a great place to lift your idea into a business. The programme provides you with all the knowledge contacts and mentoring to be ready for your next personal and business development phase.

CHRISTIAN WITZ, Founder of ComBioPro

The programme of the I.E.C.T. – Summer School provides a comprehensive insight into the world of entrepreneurship. The first item on the agenda of each day were keynotes by renowned experts such as Joerg Spreitzer, Olav Carlsen, Marcus Malek, Michael Anstey, Petra Dobrocka, Alex van Someren und Denise Vorraber. They provided the participants with valuable impressions on marketing strategies, business model, IP, finance & investment, building a great team, selling your idea and pitching.

Afterwards, the individual groups got together with their mentor to answer individual questions and to find solutions for possible problems and hurdles together. We were happy to welcome the following experts as mentors: Christian Soschner, Jane Garrett, Miranda Weston-Smith, Stephan Schächer, Uday Phadke, Werner Wutscher und Yupar Myint. The team was supported by mentoring partner Shailendra Vyakarnam.

A special feature last year was that I.E.C.T. – Hermann Hauser succeeded in bringing three highly relevant entrepreneurs and investors on board. Tony Fadell (inventor of the iPod), Charly Kleissner (Impact Investor from Austria) and Phil O’Donovan (founder of Cambridge Silicon Radio and developer of Bluetooth) They not only talked about their own experiences during their career, but were also available to answer numerous questions.

On two days during the programme, the start-ups were able to contact recognised experts in the fields of business and law and ask them questions about current hurdles. On another day, selected pitch trainers helped the participants to prepare for the upcoming Demo Day.

It has been an amazing opportunity to be part of the Summer School! Thank you for organising this amazing event, I think you all did really well and hopefully we’ll be able to visit Austria when things have calmed down a bit.

NICHOLAS FURTAK-WELLS, Summer School participant and founder of NIQS Technologies

Finally, the participants were able to present their project to a jury of selected experts and investors. The five best pitches were presented again at the European Forum Alpbach. At this point, congratulations once again: Nicholas Furtak-Wells, Theresa Hautz-Neunteufel, Jonas Schenk, Marcel Quennet and Benjamin James.

“Thanks again for everything. Was/ is an incredibly great experience for me and more doors have already opened for me than I could have ever hoped for!”

DANIEL NEUHOLD, Summer School Teilnehmer und Gründer von LoconIQ

Part of the I.E.C.T. team: Verena Schneeberger, Mariel Brandmayer, Klara Brandstätter, Annika Flatz, Alena Platzgummer, Lucas Hauser, Jasmin Güngör and Julian Holzheimer (from left to right)

The I.E.C.T. – Summer School on Entrepreneurship was a complete success. The team of I.E.C.T. – Hermann Hauser would therefore like to thank all participants, mentors and experts for their motivation and commitment. Thanks also go to the interns Alena Platzgummer and Mariel Brandmayer as well as to the facilitators Annika FlatzJulian Holzheimer, Larissa Küffer and Thomas Rosenzopf. Digitisation was a considerable challenge, which is why the team would also like to thank our tech partners Andreas Juen, Thomas Ludescher, Matthias Hosp and Joel van den Hoven.


The team is delighted with the success of the I.E.C.T. – Summer School on Entrepreneurship and looks forward to next year!

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