While most people think of Silicon Valley as the leading tech hub in the world, Estonia is quickly becoming a top player on the world stage for entrepreneurship and technology. Famed for its innovation, Estonia boasts a vast community of over 1,000 startups – famously dubbed the #EstonianMafia on Twitter – including a varied mix of established names such as Skype, to newer innovators such as unicorns including Pipedrive, Transferwise, and Bolt.
With its disruptive startup ecosystem, progressive government policies, and digital nomad education initiatives, it is fast becoming a more attractive alternative to Silicon Valley’s crowded ecosystem.Read more
The Estonian capital, Tallinn, succeeds Taoyuan in Taiwan as the “number one intelligent community”.
The “intelligent community” title is handed over annually by the New York-based Intelligent Community Forum (ICF) – a global network of 180 cities, metro regions and counties, with a think tank at its heart. The think tank studies and promotes the best practices of the world’s “intelligent communities” as “they adapt to the new demands” and “seize the opportunities presented by broadband and digital technology”.Read more
First Baltic Community Ever Named, Succeeds Taoyuan, Taiwan as Number One
(29 October 2020 – New York City) – For the first time in the twenty-one-year history of the award, the Intelligent Community Forum honored an Estonian city with its top award today when it named Tallinn, Estonia as its 2020 Intelligent Community of the Year. Tallinn has been engaged in the Intelligent Community Awards program for over a decade, having been previously named to the list of the ICF’s Top7 Communities six times since 2007.
“Last year we had a community on the other side of the world that had been working on the ICF Method for eleven years and finally was recognized as the Intelligent Community of the Year. This year we have another great city that worked even longer on the process, learned from places like Taoyuan and others and has blown people away with their thoroughness and dynamic qualities. Tallinn is, by anyone’s measure, a place that looks like our future needs to look,” said ICF Co-Founder Louis Zacharilla.
The autonomous bus revolution has arrived. Urban mobility is changing the lives of commuters and the face of five European smart city streets. An autonomous public transit service has already started its testing and will complete tests in real conditions in five European countries under a European Union initiative, part of the Horizon 2020 EU Research and Innovation Programme, between April and October 2020.
The autonomous vehicles will be tested in real-life traffic conditions with all the shuttle bus solutions offering an all-inclusive service for autonomous last-mile transport.Read more
The e-Governance Conference which holds in Estonia is an annual gathering which focuses on and aims at international digital development cooperation in all its entirety. Since 2015, the e-Governance Conference has been organised by the e-Governance Academy (eGA) in partnership with the Estonian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The 2020 edition of the e-Governance Conference is supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Swedish Government, the U-LEAD with Europe program, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications, the City of Tallinn, Intel, Google and Microsoft.Read more
The city of Tallinn and the Tehnopol Science and Business Park have announced a Tallinnovation innovation competition to find smart city solutions; the size of the innovation fund in 2020 is €50,000.
Tehnopol, the largest research and business park in Estonia, said in a statement that the organisers hope to support new smart city solutions that “will make the city of Tallinn more modern, more people-friendly, more cost-efficient and more open”.Read more
Telemedicine startup Viveo Health has raised €2 million to provide medical help via video bridge, and act as a form of ‘social distancing’. In summary, the service will help control the spread of the coronavirus in the waiting rooms of healthcare institutions.
Viveo Health, founded in 2018, began to reduce obstacles on the way to a quick diagnosis and services. Raul Källo, the founder and CEO of Viveo Health, has commented that by moving people away from crowded waiting rooms, it can reduce the spread of the virus, and people with a variety of health problems do not have to put themselves at added risk.Read more
Opera, one of the world’s leading web browsers with a user base of more than 350 million people, has completed the acquisition of the Estonian-based company Pocosys, as well as an sign an agreement to further take over Pocopay, a sister company, which holds a payment institution license and provides financial services in the European Union.
The value of the acquisition has not been disclosed.
With these acquisitions, Tallinn will become Opera’s second European hub for fintech services, following Gothenburg, Sweden. Founded in 2015, Pocosys provides modern banking technologies to fintech companies. It has previously licensed its financial software to companies in Japan, Ghana and the UK.Read more
Estonian entrepreneur Mari Martin, founder of Tallinn Dolls, a playful designer brand, wants to speed up the fashion industry, bringing clothes from concept to shelves in the shortest time ever – her new startup, FashLab, has plans to disrupt the way global fashion works; she sat down with Estonian World to talk about her experience and how she sees the future of fashion.
The term “depeche mode” or “fast fashion” has been around for years – long before the British band of the same name popularised it, but there is a growing number of people who believe the fashion industry does not act fast enough. Mari Martin, an Estonian entrepreneur and experienced fashion designer, sees this as a problem, and has created a new startup, FashLab, to push the business of making and selling clothing into the 21st century. Fashion tech is also one of the focuses of Enterprise Estonia, the Estonian government’s enterprise agency, as it is an example of an industry that could benefit from increased digitalisation.Read more