We’re approaching the end of what was a very eventful year for Impact Hub, our members, and the social entrepreneurship ecosystem. Before we dive into the new year, we’d like to take a few minutes to look back and reflect on a few of the major milestones achieved over the last twelve months and raise a glass to everyone who participated in and supported our common mission of catalyzing change through social entrepreneurship. Here are five reasons we’re raising our glass to 2017.
This year we reached over 500 members at Impact Hub Vienna, growing our community by bringing people with different backgrounds, skills, and resources into our network to collaborate. Our community team worked hard to bring together members to meet each other and share their entrepreneurial journey during weekly member lunches and our melange um vier sugar breaks.
Through WineDown events like the Future of Cities, Future of Society, and Food Talks, we invited the larger ecosystem into our doors to not only meet our ventures, but to engage in meaningful conversations and contribute ideas around how we tackle important global challenges like mobility, food waste, food production, social inclusion, and more. We had over 2,000 people take part in these community events over the course of the year.
As the social impact ecosystem has matured, so too have our ventures. To support growing startup teams, Impact Hub opened 400 square meters of space on our new third floor. Nine teams moved in this November and have already made it their home.
3) Our program support reached new heights and area codes
We also grew the capacity of our programs significantly in 2017, accelerating over 100 ventures last year between Accelerate, the Investment Ready Program, EOI, ADA, Re:Wien, Vielfalter, WWF, Found!, and Innovate4Nature.
This year, we also continued to share our knowledge of impact support by scaling several of our programs outside of Austria. Our Investment Ready Program (IRP) is now active in Munich and is on track to launch in four additional cities worldwide in 2018.
Social Impact Award (SIA) has scaled into 18 countries since opening in 2009, with 8 locations opened in 2017 alone. After incubating 172 promising ventures from across their locations this year, SIA hosted all 55 award-winning teams at the SIA Summit in Belgrade this October. Together, SIA and IRP hosted Western Balkan Impact Day as part of the Belgrade Venture Forum 2017– the largest investment event in the region.
4) We hosted our most successful CEE Impact Day event to date
The sixth edition of our CEE Impact Day had over 200 participants this year, bringing together investors from all over the region to meet our Investment Ready Program Ventures. Key stakeholders met to explore the growing investment and collaboration opportunities and enrich toe social impact ecosystem.
5) We celebrated alongside our members
Our members and Impact Hub alumni celebrated many champagne-cork moments themselves this year. Whether it was winning competitions or investment capital, adding new employees or products, or figuring out new ways to serve their beneficiaries, our members reached many of their own milestones in 2017. Here are just a few we’d like to mention:
- Hut & Stil won the Green Stadt 2016 Competition and 15,000 Euro.
- Katharina Moser, founder of MOSAIK, and Martin Wesian, founder of HELIOZ, were featured at the closing session of the political symposium of European Forum Alpbach.
- Katharina Norden, the founder of Three Coins, and Vesela Tanaskovic the founder of Afforest4Future were selected as one of the 100 global changemakers of Singularity University in Silicon Valley.
- Perrine Schober, founder of Shades Tours was selected to speak at TEDxTUWien and share her thought leadership on how to turn weaknesses into strengths.
Congrats to all our members and the many accomplishments you worked to achieve this year!
A big thanks to our members and community
As we close out the year, we’d like to give a big thank you to all our members and supporters. Without your help, none of the milestones we reached this year would have been possible. We look forward to working together to achieve even more impact in 2018.