GSE- World’s Largest Digital Accelerator Announces Fall 2017 European Agenda, Speakers, & Judges

 October 28, 2017, London, United Kingdom- The Global Startup Ecosystem (GSE) has announced the agenda and 10 speakers for the 1st annual Europe digital accelerator. Founded by Forbes 30 Under 30 Entrepreneur, Christine S. Ntim, the European cohort features finalists from over 11 different countries.

Global Startup Ecosystem (GSE)  launched the 1st annual digital startup accelerator for entrepreneurs residing in or seeking to launch a company in Europe.  GSE digital accelerator programs are open to all small businesses, startups, and freelancers. Each application round is rolling admission until the top 100 are selected to complete the program. From the finalist pool, 10 will be selected to pitch investors and influencers on demo day. The top 3 are announced at the conclusion of the program to receive partner prizes, media features, and potential investment.

GSE digital accelerators are organized by 7 regional directors who will be hosting all programs this fall. Startups can apply for admission to a digital accelerator via our partner platform F6S.  The 2017 accelerator dates are:

  1. Caribbean October 17-19
  2. Africa October 24-26
  3. Europe October 30- November 1st
  4. America November 7-9
  5. Middle East November 12-14
  6. Asia November 14,15,16
  7. Latin America November 21-23

Speaker, partnership and sponsorship inquiries can be directed to the GSE team via

Regional Director 

Kerstin Karu is an entrepreneurship facilitator helping startup founders succeed on a global scale by providing them with personal and business development-focused training as a startup advisor within the Draper University network. Simultaneously, she works with universities, accelerators and government institutions seeking to empower startup growth through LaunchPad Central’s unique Lean Innovation software founded by Steve Blank. In the past, Kerstin co-founded Blast Innovations, a Silicon Valley-based marketing software company, for which she was chosen in the Forbes Estonia 30 Under 30 list in 2015. Kerstin has also worked as a market research analyst for the largest automotive appearance products company Turtle Wax, started a fashion eCommerce business while at university, and presented as a TEDx speaker in the United Kingdom.

Global Startup Ecosystem Accelerator Co- Founder/ GSE Boot Camp Host 

Christine Souffrant Ntim is an award-winning Haitian-American entrepreneur & startup ecosystem expert for emerging markets. She was selected and featured in Forbes 30 Under 30, AdAge 40 Under 40, Haiti Changemakers 1804 List, Singularity NASA, Entrepreneur Magazine, Huffington Post, Inc Magazine and more. She speaks on digital entrepreneurship, startup hacking, exponential tech AI, and personal branding at over 20+ global conferences a year- which includes former appearances at the US State Department Tours, United Nations, TEDx, SXSW, Startup Grind Global, SeedStars World, European Union Forum and more.  She started her career as the founder of Vendedy- a social network connecting people to street markets with the aim of digitizing a $10 trillion dollar black economy and centralizing the world’s 200,000 street markets. Today, Christine is the Director of Startup Grind Dubai Powered by Google For Entrepreneurs and a partner at the which hosts the largest digital online accelerator program in the world- graduating over 1000+ companies across 190+ countries a year.

Egita Polanska
Oliver Page
Jake Disraeli
Dan Sodergren
Lucia Ciranova
Vegard Jormeland
Sydney Lai
Michael Lisovetsky
Gadiel Morantes

October 30, 2017 Day 1

6:00-6:30 pm Welcome Remarks
6:30-7:00 pm Orientation + Benefits & Perks Post Program
7:00-7:30 pm GSE Ideation and Product Development
7:30-8:00 pm GSE Customer Acquisition & Growth Hacking
8:00-8:30 pm GSE Funding: How to Raise $250k+ in 6 Months
8:30-9:00 pm GSE Marketing: Press Hacking, Social Media, Content Strategy
9:00-9:30 pm GSE Closing Remarks & Q/A

October 31, 2017  Day 2
5:45-6:00 pm Welcome Remarks
6:00-6:30 pm Vegard Jormeland: Practical Customer Development – How to Know When Your Customers Are Lying
6:30-7:00 pm Michael Lisovetsky: Growth 101
7:00-7:15 pm Oliver Page: How to Turn Obstacles Into Opportunities During Your Startup Journey
7:15-7:45 pm Kerstin Karu: The 8 Ingredients of a Successful Pitch
7:45-8:00 pm Sydney Lai: Marketing Is a Fundraising Tool
8:15-8:45 pm Gadiel Morantes: How to Build a Financial Plan That Investors Will Love – MAY BE ABLE TO MOVE TO 8:00 pm (waiting confirmation)
8:45-9:00 pm GSE Closing Remarks & Q/A’

November 1, 2017 Day 3
6:00-6:10 pm Welcome Remarks
6:10-6:20 pm Carly Mattefs: Startup Hour
6:20-6:30 pm Liesl Olivier: Literary Globe
6:30-7:00 pm Jake Disraeli: Crowdfunding 101
7:00-7:15 pm Kristel Kruustük: My Struggles As a First Time Founder
7:15-7:30 pm Flavia Anghel: Editor-in-Chief of Brandingmag and – NEEDS TO CONFIRM
7:30-7:45 pm Judge 5 Minute Introductions + Keynotes
7:45-8:30 pm Top 10 Demo Night (Pitch) Each have 1 Minute to Pitch/2 Minute Q/A
8:30-8:45 pm Dan Sodergren: Guerrilla Marketing for Startups
8:45-9:00 pm GSE Closing Remarks & Next Steps


Kristel Kruustük

Five years ago Kristel Kruustük became frustrated by how QA testers were treated. She imagined a platform appreciating the work of testers and elevating the importance of QA within organisations. Her passion to create a change in the field she loves led her to start her own business. Today, Kristel is the founder and CEO of Testlio, – an end-to-end QA management platform and community of highly vetted testers that help businesses deliver amazing customer experiences. Clients include Salesforce, Lyft, Microsoft, CBS Interactive, Flipboard and Strava.

Dan Sodergren

Dan Sodergren is a digital marketing expert and public speaker with two decades experience in training organisations in digital, social and mobile marketing. With a deep passion in helping companies start and grow, Dan teaches startups at UTC@MediaCityUK creative college, while creating results proven marketing training for companies across the United Kingdom as the founder of Great Marketing Works.

Gadiel Morantes

Gadiel Morantes is an accomplished executive with 15+ years of sales, marketing, and operations experience. He has proven experience building and maintaining profitable business relationships with key corporate decision-makers and establishing large-volume, high-profit accounts with excellent levels of retention and loyalty. In his role as Vice President of Venture Banking at Square 1 Bank, Gadiel worked with entrepreneurs and startup CEOs, providing banking solutions and serving as an advisor and connector. His vast experience — both as an entrepreneur and working extensively with founders — has given him great insight into what it takes to forge strong partnerships and build successful companies.Previously, Gadiel focused on business development for Moss Adams LLP (formerly Mohler, Nixon, & Williams) and Bowne. In his role as a business development executive, Gadiel identified new sales opportunities, developed pursuit strategies, increased new business generation, established sales and marketing strategies, and increased overall sales performance within these organizations.

Jake Disraeli

Jake Disraeli has spent his career supporting entrepreneurs and startups in a variety of ways. From leading the innovation programs at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, crowdfunding and launching his own company, and now building a new product marketplace within Indiegogo that helps startups sell their products around the world. Jake specializes in the early phases of company development, helping small teams find product market fit and successfully launch to the world.

Lucia Ciranova

Lucia Ciranova comes from an interdisciplinary field combining Design Thinking principles with strategy and economics: she thinks like a designer and speak the language of business. As a Business Designer for Fjord London with previous successes at Bespoke Copenhagen and Volkswagen, Lucia has mastered the ability to ask the right questions, challenge boundaries and communicate business values and principles to designers in order to develop a common ground where new ideas can be born.

Michael Lisovetsky

Michael Lisovetsky recently founded a growth agency called JUICE. He is the former Director of Growth at Common and former Founder of Skylight. He started his first company, a web hosting company, at the age of 14. He has a finance degree from NYU Stern. He raised $500k for his latest company, Skylight, from Tim Draper (SpaceX, Tesla, Hotmail), Marc Benioff (Salesforce), and Great Oaks VC. Skylight was acquired by Common, the leading coliving company.

Oliver Page

Oliver Page founded his first start up , Nutkase Accessories, at the age of 17 when he was an IB student in Rome, Italy. What was once a student start up has turned into an international company with sales to hundreds of companies and schools in over 35 countries. After his 1st year of university in the UK, Oliver moved to Silicon Valley to attend The Draper University of Heroes, a school for entrepreneurs founded by one of the leading venture capitalists, Tim Draper. 18 month later, Oliver returned to Italy and cofounded Scooterino, a ride sharing startup. Scooterino won a grant from the European Space Agency and has received funding from a pool of investors in Italy and the US.

Sydney Lai

Sydney Lai is a digital marketer with an award-winning background in sales and business development, she grows products and services users want. She is a TEDx Speaker on creating innovation and has been named an LGBT Technology Leader by The White House, Office of Science and Technology Policy. As a community leader building startup ecosystems, her vision is to democratize society’s access to emerging technology and entrepreneurship.

Vegard Jormeland

VegardJormeland is a Software Developer turned Psychologist, passionate about user research and behavioural design. He is a former Head of R&D at the Nordic startup (now scaleup) Zoaring . Currently serving as a Global Facilitator at Techstars Startup Weekend and Lean Innovation Coach at DNB.


Egita Polanska is part of the management team and the Program Director at Europe’s leading B2B startup accelerator Startup Wise Guys. Before joining Startup Wise Guys, Egita served as the Executive Director of Latvian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association, and as the CEO of TechHub Riga, a co-working space for new technology startups. In 2015, Egita coordinated a major tech and startup conference Tech Chill Baltics in Riga. Before returning to her native country Latvia, Egita worked at TechStars in Seattle, helping to run the accelerator program as a program manager.

Carly has over 15 years of professional experience working as a career coach, educator, academic advisor and mentor on two continents and has co-founded two startups in Spain. Currently she is working at ITRB Group as the Chief Innovation Officer, managing and consulting on large-scale innovation projects funded by the European Commission Horizon 2020 initiative. Born in the United States, she has lived in Wisconsin, Chicago, Los Angeles, Ecuador, and most recently Spain, where she has been living and working for the past 7 years. As Co-Founder & Director of Communications at VIVA Innovation Academy, Carly focused on connecting young, talented American students with startups, by creating one-of-a-kind experiential learning opportunities as well as offered management skills training to local startups in Madrid. Carly is currently Co-Founder of Startup Hour, the largest social event for startups in Madrid, where she focuses on community building and handles event planning and execution for large scale events held at startups and coworking spaces. Throughout her career Carly has developed skills in public speaking, writing, research, entrepreneurship, teaching, mentoring, leadership and management. She focuses on connecting individuals with the startup community, and has helped hundreds of expats develop and build networks abroad.

Liesl Olivier

Ø  Founder Literary Globe: 2016 onwards:  A single destination social media platform connecting writers, readers and bookstores.   Our mission is to send people back to bookstores, for new self-published authors to be discovered and more books to be published.

Ø  The English Bookshop 2004 – 2015:  Responsible for on-line (digital marketing) and off-line marketing campaigns, wholesale buying, retail selling, administration, product and business development, administration and store layout.

Ø  AMVESCAP Plc Asset Management London and Amsterdam, Office Manager, 1997 – 2003.  From secretary in London to general manager for the Amsterdam office.

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