The Top 21 Startup Conferences in Europe

Startup Geek? So are we! Whether you’re an enthusiast or on the path to building your own disruptive enterprise, conferences provide a great opportunity to get involved in the tech community. These are our favourite Startup and Tech Events taking place in Europe this year.

Starting a business and watching it soar is the highly coveted holy-grail of our time. While the idea of becoming an entrepreneur is nothing new, there has been a surge of new businesses in the past few years as a growing number of people try their hands at becoming business owners.

Why have startups become so popular? Simple, starting a business has been made much more accessible thanks to the plethora of online tools and services available to help entrepreneurs get on their feet. That being said, running a start-up is no walk in the park. It takes business sense, financial and personal commitment, and more often than not, the help and experience of a community of people or startup mentors who have run through the same gauntlet.

Startup conferences and events provide a great opportunity to mingle with like-minded people from the industry and get a feel of what’s what in the world of e-business. Offline or online conferences, some obvious benefits of attending such an event are that you can network with other founders, work on getting financing, keep your finger on the pulse of the market, and (probably) get a little tipsy.

Since these startup, content and marketing conferences can be an extremely valuable resource for anybody interested in startups and how to care for your startup dashboard, we’ve put together a list of our top 21 picks.


Startup Europe Week

Startup Europe Week is a pan-European coordinated startup event series that promotes entrepreneurship with the intent to help startups and people looking to start a business.

The initiative was founded in 2015 by Igor Tasic in collaboration with Startup Europe and the European Commission.

Startup Europe Week is largely de-centralised, follows the Silicon Valley format and relies heavily on local volunteers such as startups, entrepreneurs, and other stakeholders to organise the local events.

Anyone is free to take part in the event as Co-Organiser but note that you have to apply and pass a selection procedure.

Why you should go:

The conference covers a pretty broad scope including everything from online tools to incorporating a business and tax regulations in Europe. If you’re just starting out they also run live consultations to help your business get set up.  

Finally this grass-roots event doesn’t follow a very rigid agenda and man is it popular – last year’s SEW18 event connected 300 local events in over 50 countries around the world and reached over 6 million people through social media! 

It’s a great mix of like minded people meeting to discuss startups and share their knowledge.  If you’re looking for a pure experience with a great collegial energy, look no further.


  • Location: 300+ independent startup conferences in cities across Europe
  • Organizers: 250+
  • Date: March 11-15th
  • Cost: Free

Official Website

Startup Ole’

Startup Olé has become a benchmark event for the international tech-entrepreneurial ecosystem.

With over 500 speakers, 850 startups, and dozens of media representatives, accelerators and investors, the upcoming fifth edition of this startup conference is expected to be the biggest and most impactful to date.

The conference promises to provide ample opportunities for all key players in the industry to meet, interact and learn from one another.

Why you should go:

Startup Olé does a great job at showcasing startups and connecting them to Accelerators, Investors, Public Administrations, Policy-Makers, Universities, and Talent. It will also provide a forum where startups can share experiences and develop synergies so that they can grow together.


  • Location: Salamanca, Spain
  • Date: March 26- 28th
  • Cost: Free for general attendance
  • Confirmed speakers: 500+ Speakers
  • Attendees: 30,000+
  • Media Reps.: 21
  • Startups: 850+

Official Website


Dublin Tech Summit

The DTS is a recently founded tech conference at the heart of “Big Tech’s” European HQ – Dublin. In two years it has grown to become the largest tech summit in Ireland and is gaining a reputation of being the fastest growing tech conference in Europe.

Why you should go:

The conference brings in A-list speakers from the likes of Google, Amazon, Reddit and NASA – that’s right NASA, they have Astronauts speaking at their conference, and they’ve partnered with the usual (powerhouses of Tech) suspects.


  • Location: Dublin, Ireland
  • Date: April 10-11th
  • Cost for Women in Tech: €60 per ticket (offer ends March 9th)
  • Cost of a regular ticket: €349 per ticket

Official Website


EU-Startups Summit

The EU-Startups Summit 2019 will bring together a large number of founders, startup enthusiasts, corporates, angel investors, VCs, as well as media people from all over Europe. The event is an opportunity for networking, and a meeting point for aspiring entrepreneurs and investors who are interested in building international tech companies.

During the EU-Startups Summit, we’ll also have a big pitch competition with 15 of Europe’s most exciting early-stage startups. The pre-selected startups are going to pitch their business idea within a 3-minute-presentation in front of the audience and an expert jury of well known investors. Click here to see a list of 30 other startup pitch competitions coming up this year!

Thomas Ohr - Founder

Why you should go:

Do you really need a reason to visit Barcelona in the spring?

All jokes a side, this startup conference features a Pitch Competition and the deadline for startups to apply is March 2.

Startups looking to compete should be in pre-seed or seed stage, not older than two years, should have raised no VC funding yet (or less than €500K) and have to be based in Europe. 


  • Location: Barcelona, Spain
  • Date: May 2 – 3
  • Cost for startups: €149 per ticket
  • Cost for investors:  €295 per ticket
  • Cost for corporates: €395 per ticket

Official Website

PODIM Conference 

With over 150 Startups, 100 international investors, 200 corporates, media representatives and attendees from just about everywhere, PODIM is one of the largest startup events in the region.

Their goal is to connect all stakeholders with global minds and leaders and to serve as platform for investors to connect with the most promising European startups. PODIM brings together the global and regional startup ecosystems with a massive impact in the European Adriatic & Western Balkans.

Why you should go:

PODIM is big, really big.

The exposure available at this event is hard to beat, plus the round-up of speakers and startups participating is truly impressive. 

If that’s not enough, then there’s also the 1:1 arena, which in addition to the events and speeches, provides an optimal environment for stakeholders to get together and talk business.


  • Location: Maribor, Slovenia
  • Date: May 21-22nd
  • Cost for attendees: €290 per ticket
  • Cost for investors & corporates: €390 per ticket
  • Cost for startups: €95 per ticket
  • Confirmed speakers: List is still being finalized

Official Website

The Next Web Conference

The 13 year running TNW Conference is a technology festival that brings international technology executives, high grade investors and startups from just about everywhere for two days of business and knowledge sharing. The conference takes place in one of the highest production value environments of any tech event on the planet.

Since 2006 TNW has ballooned from a 200-person event to one of the leading technology events anywhere, attracting thousands of attendees and more than 3,500 companies from all over the world.

Why you should go:

The TNW Conference is all about networking.

At the previous edition over 350 startups participated in nearly 4,000 meetings using their in-house matchmaking and scheduling platform.

Also, this startup conference focuses content into 11 tracks such as The Future of Work, Rebranding and Growth etc. to give participants the opportunity to dive deep into their areas of interest.


  • Location: NDSM – Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Date: May 9-10th
  • Cost of Expo Pass: €149 per ticket
  • Cost of One-Day Pass: €499 per ticket
  • Cost of Conference Pass: €649 per ticket
  • Cost of Priority Pass: €799
  • Expected Attendees: 17,500

Official Website


Based out of Tallinn, Estonia, over 200 global investors, 150 startups and visitors from over 20 countries are expected to attend Latitude59, the flagship startup & tech event of e-Estonia – the world’s first digital society.

Whether you are an entrepreneur, general attendee, investor, startup or student, Latitude59 offers a platform to learn, connect and network with fellow entrepreneurs, investors and leaders.

Why you should go:

Estonia is a booming IT hub in Europe with the most startups per capita in Europe. Estonia also offers the world’s first e-Residency program which allows for the establishment of a transnational secure digital identity empowering entrepreneurs to run a location independent business online from anywhere in the world.

They’re also running two pitch competitions, the L59 Pitch Competition and the NAP Pitch Competition which will award the winning startup up to €250,000 from the Nordic Angel Program.


  • Location: Tallin, Estonia
  • Date: May 16-17th
  • Cost for students: €79 per ticket
  • Cost for startups: €99 per ticket
  • Cost for investors: €259 per ticket
  • Cost for guests: €159 per ticket
  • Last year’s turnout: 2,500 from over 20 countries

Official Website


DigitalK takes place at the heart of the booming CEE region – Sofia. Thanks to Bulgaria’s vibrant startup scene the city is attracting increased interest and investment with increasing momentum.

With an impressive and diverse line-up of speakers and participating businesses DigitalK attendees are sure to leave with fresh ideas and valuable insights from passionate people in the industry.

Why you should go:

DigitalK will host a start-up competition. The best startups will present to leading European venture capital funds and tech journalists. Finalists will pitch on the main conference stage and compete for a 10,000 Euro cash prize and great exposure.

I never miss DigitalK in Sofia, Bulgaria. It’s a fantastic event for CEE startups.

Mike Butcher, Editor At Large, TechCrunch


  • Location: Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Date: May 30 – 31st
  • Cost for startups: €71 per ticket
  • Cost for early birds: €119 per ticket (until March 15, 2019)
  • Cost for regular ticket: TBA
  • Cost of executive pass: €500 per ticket
  • Cost for startup demo stand: TBA
  • Last year’s turnout: 2,500 attendees, 50+ speakers, 60+ global investors

Official Website


The “EU Digital and Innovations Week” is expected to attract over 10,000 participants from over 100 countries including 1,500 top policy makers from all around Europe and beyond (heads of states, EU commissioners, ministers, mayors, MEPs etc.)

If that’s not enough, it’s also expected to bring together 6,000 of the world’s enterprise leaders, global and European founders, entrepreneurs, investors, innovators, scientists and digital economy shapers and a top selection of Europe’s 200 most promising startups.

In short, it’s a powerhouse of a startup conference that keeps change-makers and market movers in mind.

Why you should go:

The conference brings EU policy makers, global business leaders including Fortune 500 top executives and connects them to top entrepreneurs and innovators. For startups, the Webit Festival Europe also offers the chance to win €220,000 in seed money as part of its Founder’s Game event.

If you’re looking to make an impact and think you can cut it with the best and the biggest, you need to be here.


  • Location: Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Date: May 13 – 15th
  • Cost of Pro Ticket: €248 per ticket
  • Cost of Investor Ticket: €288 per ticket
  • Cost of Platinum Ticket: €1440 per ticket
  • Expected Attendees: 15,000

Official Website



A 2-day matchmaking startup event organised by ArcticStartup, Arctic15 is a beast of a conference that promises to attract 450 startups, 350 international investors, 150 corporates and many other stakeholders from media and the broader industry. 

Following a 15 track platform that covers fields such as Fintech, AI, Talent etc. Arctic15 prioritises high quality, high impact networking. Featuring deal rooms where one on one meetings can take place between stakeholders, the conference goes a step beyond offering networking areas, workshops and roundtables by including pre-event matchmaking as an added service.

Additionally the pitching competition has introduced several of Northern Europe’s most well-known startups to a wider audience, including Kiosked, Pipedrive, Infogram, Yousician, Transfluent and Entocube. Arctic15 finalists have secured 120 million euros of financing to date.

Why you should go:

They usually feature all-star speakers such as Gary Vaynerchuk, and plenty of other speakers, tech influencers, investors and entrepreneurs from all over the world.

The event is also one of Europe’s fertile stomping grounds for startups. Their funding program in with   collaboration with FiBAN and the Nordic Angel Program provides an opportunity for startups to raise money with a €115,000 investment raised last year for startup Screenful. 

Historically, around 40% of meetings in Arctic15’s deal rooms have led to real world deals being signed – pretty good odds, in this writer’s humble opinion.

The center of the conference is not the speakers on stage as at so many, but relationship building. People just kept chatting.

Tech Crunch


  • Location: Helsinki, Finland
  • Date: June 5-6th
  • Cost for startups: €359 per ticket
  • Cost for investors: €777 per ticket
  • Cost for attendees: €599 per ticket
  • Cost for startup demo stand: €1,199 per ticket
  • Capital Arctic15 finalists have raised to date: €120,000,000

Official Website


Organised by Grunderszene (a popular tech mag that supports early stage startups) and partnering with the likes of Oracle, the HEUREKA Conference is a key founders conference in Germany. Attracting nearly 4,500 attendees the conference aims to connect all stakeholders of the digital economy. Events will be geared towards information sharing and comparing the success and challenge stories of participating businesses.

Why you should go:

The conference focuses on sharing knowledge centered around the primary factors of sustainable success – particularly as it applies to early-stage start-ups. Also the conference is a great way to get a feel for Berlin’s buzzing startup scene and rub shoulders with investors and champions of the local industry.


  • Location: Berlin, Germany
  • Date: June 12th
  • Cost for startups: €99 (Early-bird) / €129 (Lazy-Bird) / €149 (Standard) per ticket
  • Cost for students: €40 (Early-bird) / €55 (Lazy-Bird) / €75 (Standard) per ticket
  • Service tickets: €299 (Early-bird) / €349 (Lazy-Bird) / €499 (Standard) per ticket

Official Website

Startup Grind Europe Conference

Organised by Startup Grind, an online community connecting over 1,000,000 entrepreneurs across 115 countries, the Europe 2018 conference hosted in London promises to be a gigantic event.

With 3,000 founders and investors attending, and over 100 European startups, and 75 speakers across three stages – the event is going to be jam packed with keynotes, educational workshops, and VC Q&A sessions highlighting several hot topics, including Blockchain, AI, and Fintech.

Why you should go:

Startup Grind benefits from a vast network of entrepreneurs across the globe and has established itself as a benchmark startup conference for new businesses, investors and people who have their eye on the startup space.

Having hosted 5,000 events world-wide you can be sure their experience has not gone to waste and every event promises to deliver valuable lessons learned, success/failure stories and best practices. 

Plus, it doesn’t hurt that the event is Sponsored by the likes of Google for Startups and BCG Digital Ventures.


  • Location: London, UK
  • Date: June 6th
  • Cost for general admission: GBP 349 per ticket (GBP 159 before March 6th)
  • Cost for Investors: GBP 399 per ticket (GBP 209 before March 6th)
  • Cost for VIP access: GBP 695 per ticket (GBP 395 before March 6th)
  • Cost to Exhibit: Grind Program GBP 995 (includes 4 tickets) Growth Program 1,495 (Includes 6 tickets)
  • Startups Exhibiting: +100

Official Website

Startup Extreme

Startup Extreme is created by the team from Angel Challenge and Startup Norway, with support from the Norwegian startup ecosystem. Founded in 2015 with a goal to support the local community and build a strong and healthy startup ecosystem.

The conference in Bergen and the follow up summit in Voss is tech conferencing done Norwegian-style! The summit will include extreme sports such as BMX and River Rafting. 

Unfortunately, you’ll need to be invited to attend the summit in Voss but still you can check out all the cool tech at day one in Bergen.

Why you should go:

Well, if you can get invited, because it’s freaking cool as hell?

“Startup Extreme gathers 300 key influencers from the US and European tech scene for three days of extreme sports, startups and networking in the stunning surroundings of Voss, Norway. Meet the hottest startups of the Nordics and discover the Norwegian fjords and mountains through activities and leisure at the most extreme tech event this year.”

Startup Extreme. 18 June 2015, Bergen, Norway. Image ©Dan Taylor/Heisenberg Media –


  • Location: Bergen, Norway and summit in Voss
  • Date: June 24-26th
  • Cost: Free (the summit event with extreme sports is invitation only)

Official Website


Tech Open Air

Tech Open Air (often abbreviated as “TOA”) is an annual interdisciplinary technology festival that takes place in Berlin, Germany.

It started in 2012 as the very first crowdfunded tech festival and has become a popular tech conference both in Europe and internationally. Tech Open Air combines technology, music, art, and science by providing a platform for multi-disciplinary knowledge exchange, collaboration, and development.

The event takes place this June and is expected to gather a number of influential speakers, entrepreneurs, artists, scientists, startups, and a huge number of attendees from all over.

Why you should go:

With previous supporters including giants like Apple, Google, and IBM – TOA is a top-tier tech event geared towards multidisciplinarians and promises to inspire at every turn.  Plus, it’s huge – there’s something for everybody at Tech Open Air.


The Next Web


  • Location: Berlin, Germany
  • Date: July 2 – 5th
  • Cost for students: €99
  • Cost for Festival Tickets: €229 per ticket (Early bird)
  • Cost for Interactive Tickets: €329 per ticket (Early bird)
  • Cost for Thought Leader Tickets: €999 per ticket (Early bird)
  • Last year’s attendees: 20,000

Official Website

Pirate Summit

PIRATE Summit started in 2011 as a grassroots entrepreneurship conference with the focus on connecting startup founders.

It has grown significantly, and it’s looking to foster meaningful connections between entrepreneurs, encourage knowledge sharing in a collegial, non-transactional environment and connect promising startups to investors that are able to support their ideas. 

Also yes, it seems they’ve got a wooden statue, and yes, it looks like they mean to set it on fire.

Why you should go:

If you are looking to connect and learn from likeminded founders on a level playing field, then you should definitely consider PIRATE Summit.  Read more on the theme of this year’s summit #intheblack here.


  • Location: Cologne, Germany
  • Date: June 26 – 28th
  • Cost for Startups: €399 per ticket (€199 Early)
  • Cost for Investors: €799 per ticket (€399 Early)
  • Cost for General Attendees: €649 per ticket

Official Website


Oslo Innovation Week

In its 14th iteration Oslo Innovation Week takes place September of this year attracting people from all over the world.

The theme of this conference centers  around startups that are making a difference, a highlight being on companies that are addressing the UN’s sustainable development goals.

The roster includes 50 events in one week, full-day conferences, talks, pitching, workshops and afterwork parties.

Why you should go:

A no B.S. attitude to solving the world’s problems, this is a large startup conference for people who are “building sh*t that matters.”


  • Location: Oslo, Norway
  • Date: September 23-27th
  • Cost: Seems most events are free
  • Last year’s turnout: 10,700

Official Website


With A-list attendees such as Sir Richard Branson, Bits & Pretzels is an application-only, three-day festival that connects and attracts the most successful founders from around the world.  5,000 founders, investors, startup enthusiasts, and all other decision-makers of the startup ecosystem will meet for the three day festival in Munich.

Why you should go:

Oktoberfest, oh and the who’s who of the start-up universe will be there, but also Oktoberfest.


  • Location: Munich, Germany
  • Date: September 29th – October 1st
  • Cost: Tickets to go on sale soon, check back later.

Official Website


South Summit

South Summit is a leading tech conference taking place this October in Madrid.  It has rapidly evolved, becoming a benchmark in the industry and has had some seriously impressive speakers under its belt including Apple’s Steve Wozniak, Google’s Eric Schmidt and Gwynne Shotwel from SpaceX.

With thousands of attendees and top-tier participants, South Summit is does its best to showcase the innovation and prowess of the European and international startup ecosystem.

Why you should go:

The South Summit Startup Competition is a fully fledged gauntlet bringing in the 100 most innovative startups as finalists. 

The top finalists will receive face-time with venture capitalists, receive training, mentorship, and finally the opportunity to present on stage in the competition for a handful of prizes and media coverage.  The competition is open to startups in any industry and at any stage of development providing they have an innovative and disruptive idea. 

Finalists of the South Summit Startup Competition have raised over 2 Billion Euros to date.


  • Location: Madrid, Spain
  • Date: October 2-4th
  • Cost: Free to apply
  • Attendance: Over 3,200 Startups

Official Website


Web Summit

Web Summit started in 2010 with the goal of connecting the tech community with all industries and eventually grew to become the “largest technology conference in the world.”

It also has the reputation of being the world’s best tech conference. 

This is the Titan in our list of startup conferences, partnering with industry leaders such as BMW, Google, IBM, and Microsoft to name but a small few, the heavy-lifting that Web Summit achieves in its four day event is simply unparalleled. 

Why you should go:

Web Summit has hosted speakers from Al Gore to Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking, why wouldn’t you want to go? Just don’t geek out too much if you meet your idols.

The best technology conference on the planet



  • Location: Lisbon, Portugal
  • Date: November 4-7th
  • Cost: Pre-register now to get two tickets for €850
  • Last year’s turnout: 70,000!?!

Official Website


Yet another gigantic event – Slush is a non-profit conference organized by a community of entrepreneurs, investors, students and festival organizers. A leading tech event, it aims to “help the next generation of great, world-conquering companies forward.”

Slush has everything from keynotes, to meetings areas, networking events, exhibitions and a pitch competition.  Also, 100 top startups from around the world will be featured and receive valuable resources in the form of exposure, mentorship and the opportunity to secure financing.

As if organising one huge conference wasn’t enough – Slush will also be hosting conferences in Tokyo, Singapore and Shanghai this year!

Why you should go:

Having been called “Burning Man meets TED” the event has a lot to offer and a cool vibrant energy.

So aside from the laundry list of opportunities it presents, how about channeling your inner viking and trying to survive Helsinki in the winter?


  • Location: Helsinki, Finland
  • Date: November 21-22th
  • Cost: TBD
  • Last year’s turnout: 20,000+

Official Website


Tech Crunch Disrupt

While there’s still not much information on what will happen in Tech Crunch Disrupt in Berlin this year, the conference has had a lot of success in Berlin, London and San Francisco – featuring a Startup Alley where startups can display in front of thousands of other businesses, investors, and media representatives.

Why you should go:

Previous editions of this startup conference have featured the Startup Battlefield, which is where the “world’s top early-stage startups [come] together on the Disrupt Main Stage to compete for the coveted Disrupt Cup … and the attention of media and investors.” Last year’s Berlin winners Legacy raised $50,000.


  • Location: Berlin, Germany
  • Date: December 11 – 12th
  • Cost: TBD

Official Website

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