Almost 2,300 startups, representing dozens of industries and hundreds of countries worldwide, united in Lisbon this year for Web Summit. The event was these startups’ chance to meet investors and learn from tech experts, no matter where in the world they hailed from.
A huge number of startup founders attended with one goal only: To make a name for their company as the next big thing.
PITCH, in partnership with Siemens, brings together the world’s leading early-stage startups for a live onstage battle, and 105 of the 2,300 startups exhibiting at Web Summit 2022 took part in the PITCH competition over the three days in Lisbon’s Altice Arena.
The PITCH winner for 2022: Theneo
Theneo is an AI platform that allows users to import API collections, and drag and drop requests, and convert them into a variety of programming languages. As an API tool, Theneo is designed for all team members, from developers to non-technical team members.
“The funny thing is, last year, we didn’t get into the PITCH competition at all. I was watching as an attendee, and I said, ‘One day, I want to be there on the stage’. I didn’t expect that I would get to the semi-finals this year, but it happened, and then the finals. It feels surreal,” said Ana Robakidze, Theneo founder and CEO.
Theneo bucks the trend of the last three years, during which PITCH winners – Smartex, Lalibela Global-Networks and Nutrix – have all been medtech startups.
“We are the first Georgian company to ever go this far in any kind of big startup competition. So I feel like it’s beyond just me or my company. It also represents a lot for my country. Unfortunately, not a lot of people know about the startup ecosystem in Georgia. There are so many great startups, and I feel like I’m also representing them,” said Ana.
Last year’s PITCH winner, Smartex – a medtech company from Porto – revealed on stage at Web Summit yesterday that it has raised $25 million in its Series A funding round.
The final, held on Web Summit’s Center Stage, saw Theneo crowned as 2022 winner, with Gataca, an enterprise software solutions startup from Spain, and Biome Diagnostics, a medtech and pharma startup from Austria, finishing as runners up.
The three finalists pitched to a judging panel comprising Y Combinator president Geoff Ralston, Monte Carlo co-founder and CEO Barr Moses, 500 Global founding partner and CEO Christine Tsai, and Siemens Xcelerator’s Bettina Rotermund – all heavyweights in the investment and startup world.