Yesterday, we welcomed 16 European startups from over 12 countries to the Discovery Tour in Barcelona, hosted by Peninsula. Our CEO, Simon Lee, COO, Alberto Ordieres, and Pedro Olivares gave our international guests a warm welcome.

Access2Europe is a project awarded with funding by Horizon 2020 from the European Commision and bridges four startup ecosystems in Spain, France, Estonia, and Germany in order to help European startups scaling up across the continent.

Following a quick pitch session, Didac Lee, Entrepreneur and Investor gave an inspiring speech about what really matters when scaling up a company. Our startups had the opportunity to about their challenges, Didac provided hints and best practices. After a busy morning, our startups enjoyed a real Paella on the terrace and, of course, the Spanish weather.

The next point on the agenda was a visit at IESE Business School. Luca Venza, Associate Director of Career Services, and Eddy Zakes, Head of Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center, talked about practicalities of recruiting MBA in the startup world, helping them to manage and engage talent. The following keynote was held by Esther Cid, psychologist, talent expert and career mentor. She gave insights on how to attract talent and hire successfully in the Spanish market. The startups engaged in lively discussions and got loads of new inspiration for the businesses.

We finished the day with a private networking event at El Principal de l’Eixample, with our special guests Vincent Rosso, founder of Blablacar and Consentio, Manuel Cermeron from Suez, Marcos Isamat from Sepsia and Salva Silvestre from Seat, who shared their experiences of doing business the Spanish ecosystem. The startups used this opportunity to socialise and exchange their ideas.

After dinner, our startups enjoyed the last keynote of the day, which was presented by Laura Urquizu, CEO of Redpoints. She gave us exclusive insights in how she managed to increase Redpoints’ ARR from 1M to 10M in two years. An amazing experience, in which our participants were confronted with the challenges and huge benefits scaling up internationally.

During the day, some of our startups also engaged in private meeting with corporates from Barcelona, making first contacts and establishing collaborations.