I went to the Slush startup festival.
Helsinki is an amazing city. It resembles St. Petersburg, and sometimes, the Baltic states.
Once a part of the Russian Empire, Finland retains a just noticeable imprint of the imperial past, in architecture and something n imperceptible.
At the same time, Helsinki is a super-trendy place: design, innovations, the European Silicon Valley, one can say. Nokia and Microsoft are flagmen of the local market, but Angry Birds and Linus are world-famous as well. A huge tech park of innovation companies is located not far from the capital.
The Allegro train took us from St. Petersburg to Helsinki very fast. My role at the conference was to take part in the startup festival together with the Alloka team, where I am a co-founder and the mentor.
To say that I liked the event is to say nothing. I saw things of this level only in the Silicon Valley. And then, the Finns are very friendly and broadbrow people. Innovators and startuppers are welcome here. The Prime Minister of Finland visited the conference, and I pushed through the crowd to take a picture.
Conclusions: I think Finland can be a boon for Russian teams, a real “window to Europe”.
Ilya Osipov - Entrepreneur, expert on freemium products, author of articles about virality, retention and gamification.