21-22 June 2018, London, United Kingdom
Business leaders, heads of Investment Promotion Agencies (IPAs), senior city & regional authorities, ambassadors, embassy officials, entrepreneurs and social movements from across the Emerging Europe region and Western Europe gathered in the UK capital to debate key issues and recognise excellence in the region. The event was an opportunity to emphasise and advance Emerging Europe’s core aim of bringing the countries of emerging Europe closer together, especially on the global stage.
The inaugural edition of the Awards featured 12 winners: nine chosen by over 100 jurors out of 90 nominees, one — the Lifetime Achievement Award — was given by the Emerging Europe team who also selected the winning trophy. The final Awards — the National Investment Promotion Agency of the Year — resulted from a comprehensive research carried out by Emerging Europe.
Winner — Invest Lithuania
2. Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (LIAA)
3. Polish Investment and Trade Agency (PAIH)
Winner — Solaris (Poland)
2. Wizz Air (Hungary)
3. Avast Software (Czechia)
Winner — Amazon (Slovakia)
2. JP Morgan Chase & Co (Poland)
3. Chocolette Confectionary (Latvia)
Winner — City of Wrocław (Poland)
2. City of Sofia (Bulgaria)
3. City of Poznan (Poland)
Winner — Siemens Czech Republic
2. International Center of Excellence on Coal Mine Methane (Poland)
3. Sentiance (Lithuania)
Winner — Plečnik’s Ljubljana (Slovenia)
2. Lonely Planet Best Value Destination 2018, City of Tallinn (Estonia)
3. Where.ge, Georgia Today Group (Georgia)
Winner — New Bazaar (Tirana, Albania)
2. America for Bulgaria Foundation: The Little Heroes Initative in Pirogov Hospital (Bulgaria)
3. The Municipality of Lviv, The Renovation of Mytna Square (Ukraine)
Winner — Deepdee (Belarus)
2. ParrotOne (Poland)
3. UniExo (Ukraine)
Winner — Mnem Care (We Care, Georgia)
2. Convergys, Lean In Circles (Romania/CEE)
3. Business Class Academy, Objectivity/PwC/UBS & Partners (Poland)
Winner — Teach For Armenia
2. ex aequo, EBRD Private Sector Youth Initiative (Croatia) and It’s Up To Me Foundation: The Big Adventure ‘It’s Up To Me’ (Bulgaria)
Winner — Professor Günter Verheugen, former Vice President of the European Commission
Winner — Barbara Szőke and Bálint Szalai, Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design in Budapest (Hungary)
The Evening Welcome Reception at the Palace of Westminster
Selected guests were hosted at the Churchill Room in the very heart of the Palace, located next to the House of Lords terrace overlooking the River Thames. The gathering was a chance to meet & network in this grand environment, and the guests were addressed by Andrew Wrobel from Emerging Europe, Günter Verheugen, former European Commissioner for Enlargement (1999-2004), Richard Stephens, and – last but not least – by Andrew Rosindell MP, who kindly hosted the reception and gave the attendees a very personal speech about the importance of the CEE region for Britain and himself personally.
The Morning Conference & Presentation of the Investment Promotion Agency Survey at the EBRD HQ
The day started with a Keynote Presentation by Helena Schweiger, Associate Director and Senior Economist from the EBRD, entitled Sustaining Emerging Europe’s Impressive Growth.
Then Andrew Wrobel, Head of Content Strategy and Content from Emerging Europe, presented the much-awaited highlights from the landmark study & research into the 23 national investment promotion agencies of the emerging Europe region.
This was followed by the official launch of the Emerging Europe Alliance of Business Services, Innovation and Technology by Tom Quigley, CEO of the Alliance.
The Morning Breakout Sessions (EBRD)
Attendees then divided into two groups, with the business leaders, IPAs and embassy representatives heading to the grand Boardroom, on the 10th floor, to discuss the findings from the IPA survey under the title Destination Investment (read more about the session).
The more entrepreneurial and social movement-minded participants headed to the ultra-cool discussion room for a session about innovation in the emerging Europe region under the title Social Innovation & Dynamic Entrepreneurship. (to read more, click here).
The Afternoon Conference & Awards Ceremony (EBRD)
The much-anticipated climax of the event kicked off with a Welcome Address by Philip ter Woort, Director, Head of Business Development at the EBRD.
Next came one of the major parts of the day, the Keynote Speech by Günter Veuheugen, who put the whole event, and raison d’être of the Emerging Europe Awards, in context by telling participants about the early days when expansion further east was by no means a foregone conclusion.
The former commissioner’s address was followed by another highlight of the day, a very lively Business Leaders Fireside Chat with Olga Grygier-Siddons, CEO of PwC Central & Eastern Europe, and Peter Stracar, President & CEO of GE Europe, and moderated by Samuel Burke from CNN.
Then came the Emerging Europe Awards ceremony, the part nominees from all of the categories had been anticipating for the last few weeks. The ceremony was led by Richard Stephens, ably assisted by Simon Bračun, Partner of KBP law firm, Olga Grygier-Siddons and Claudia Patricolo, Deputy Editor of Emerging Europe.
The event finished with a celebratory drinks reception, hosted by KBP law firm, followed by an unofficial after-party next to the Gherkin, which lasted late into the night.
Emerging Europe countries