The iBridges Conference 2015 was a three day event organized by the University of California Berkeley to assess and create opportunities for business engagement with Iran. Berlin hosted nearly 700 participants from more than 50 countries. The inspiring presenters and panelists and the great energy of the participants made it wonderful and memorable for everyone.
Now the enjoyable moment is over and it is time for us to find our way to utilize the synergies and make an impact.
While networking three different groups of entrepreneurs were distinguishable among the participants. The first group includes the entrepreneurs living outside Iran, with inspiring success stories, valuable know-how and strong network around the world.
The second group contains technology start-ups, incubators and VCs who are based in Iran. Their knowledge about economic situation, business standards and entrepreneurship ecosystem of the country provides a great insight of what has been done so far and what is to be done in the future. Their hands-on analysis guides us through the opportunities and challenges of the Iranian market and its needs.
The third group is made of Iranian expats, aiming to support the blooming entrepreneurship trend in Iran by their knowledge, investments and business ideas. Eager to dedicate their career to this, many of them are founders of young start-ups of a kind I call “connectors”.
The first two groups were more noticeable during the event. The connector businesses are practically on hold until the sanctions are lifted. Being one of the Iranian expats, I believe the time has come for the connector start-ups to develop innovative businesses for a responsible engagement between Iran and the developed economies.
Let me thank the organizers, volunteers and participants for making iBridge Berlin happen. Hopefully next year we hear even more about the Iranian start-ups inside as well as outside the country, and their contributions to a stronger “bridging”.
Ps. For more information about the conference, check the iBridges website: