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EPIC Organizes Speed Networking with Startup Advisors

YEREVAN, Armenia — On May 2, the Entrepreneurship and Product Innovation Center (EPIC) of the American University of Armenia (AUA) held a speed networking event. Speed networking is a structured acceleration process designed to facilitate new, collaborative relationships between startup teams and members of EPIC’s large network of venture advisors. As a result, speed networking enables startup teams to expand their networks and gain expert feedback on their startups and activities.

During a one-hour session, teams were given time slots to meet advisors from leading organizations in the Armenian startup ecosystem. Among advisors were Samson Avetian (Angel Investor Club of Armenia), Bahareh Fatemi (TUMO Labs), Jesus Lozano (Regional startup advisor from the European Commission), Nareg Soghomonian (Preezma), Vardan Harutunyan (Denovo Sciences), Tsovinar Sofi Babayan (Freelance Startup Coach and Investor), and Mane Yeganyan (SmartGateVC). 

“Shaking up your own beliefs about your project and having someone look at it from a very different angle (actually, from seven different angles), is beneficial for teams,” mentions Babayan.

While pitching their startups to the advisors, the startup teams had the chance to also practice and improve their pitches. Co-Founder of HogaTAR team Heghine Hakobyan remarks, “It was great presenting the same idea to different people and getting a variety of viewpoints and valuable feedback.”

Anna Khachatryan, the operations and community manager of EPIC, notes, “The teams are now at a stage where they need expert advice. We have successfully spent two months on idea validation and customer research. Now, it is time to gather expert feedback and move ahead to iterate the first MVPs and prototypes. We are thankful to all EPIC supporters and friends who have acted as advisors, provided feedback, and shared their industry contacts with our teams. This was a great event of experience sharing.“

The Entrepreneurship and Product Innovation Center (EPIC) is a platform of the American University of Armenia (AUA) for promoting entrepreneurial education, cross-disciplinary collaboration, and startup venture incubation. EPIC provides an ecosystem for emerging entrepreneurs consisting of first-class facilities and collaborative workspace, programs and events, and a network of mentors, advisors, and investors. EPIC fosters the understanding and application of entrepreneurship in students and faculty at AUA to craft high-impact multidisciplinary ventures.